BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Informal transport receives increased attention to improve mobility conditions mainly in cities in the global south. This interest has perhaps two reasons. The first reason is that new public transport schemes are introduced. While these new systems such as bus rapid transit (BRT) and cable cars have significant effects on urban environments and mobility patterns (Brand and Dávila 2011, Behrens 2014) they also raise the question on how to integrate existing informal service. Informal transport, also referred to as paratransit, has gained academic and practical interest in recent years. The existence of the two different words already indicates that definitions vary. Most authors agree that paratransit represents a privately developed service profiting from relaxed or non-existing regulatory frameworks (Salazar Ferro 2015). That means that paratransit also includes services that operate with permits issued by state authorities while their operations remain widely outside official regulatory frameworks (Salazar Ferro et al. 2012). Some authors also attribute aspects such flexibility of the operations, small and old vehicles, lack of fixed schedules and fragmented ownership to these services as further defining elements (Salazar Ferro at al. 2012, Salazar Ferro 2015). Informal transport on the other hand refers to “services operating without official endorsement” (Cervero and Golub 2007). These services still provides a substantial share of public transport in many cities of the global south (Salazar Ferro 2015). Sometimes the implementation of new formal systems also evokes new informal services as the restructuring of public transport systems in some cases creates new demands if not all mobility needs are being covered by formal modes (Arteaga 2012, Jirón 2013). The results of these developments are de facto hybrid urban transport systems (Salazar Ferro et al. 2013, Behrens 2014). The second reason can be traced to those cities where informal transport is currently active and where it is likely to continue to be the single most important option of a public transport system in cities. Here the issues are more related to the question how the service can be incrementally improved to minimize some of its negative effects. The level of public transport provision in the third world is very low. The supply of Public transport can no longer cope with the demand. This is due to the rapid urbanization and the increasing economic activities in developing part of the world which make it difficult for the transportation needs of the people to be fully satisfied. In studying the roles and adverse effects of transportation in cities, many researchers like Vuchic, 2005; Sperling, 1995; and others submit that transport is a catalytic force and agent responsible for both economic growth and decline, especially where economic resources and conditions as well as human endeavor are insufficient. In this vein, efficient transportation system should be seen as a factor that unite the entire economy and facilitates development (Olorunfemi and Basorun, 2013; Kwakye et al, 1994) noted that a well functioning transport system helps to maximize the economic growth and progress of cities. Public transportation system provides the most efficient means of moving large number of people especially in high populated urban centres. In addition to the well being of its users, public transport plays a vital role in the productivity of cities which in turns has a direct bearing on the national economies (World Bank, 2001; Lyndon and Todd, 2006). According to the World Bank Report (1975); transportation is the movement of people and goods from one location to another (Okoko, 2006). Mode of transport includes air, road, rail, water, cable, pipeline and space. The public transportation challenges that are directly associated with the sprawling urban growth of Lagos are further aggravated by its status as the hub of the nation’s economic, commercial and industrial activities. Most of Nigeria’s manufacturing outfits are concentrated in Lagos and 45.0 % of the nation’s skilled manpower is resident in the city (LAMATA 2008). In addition to this, the city remains Nigeria’s gateway, housing the nation’s principal commercial sea and airports. The transportation inadequacies places a greater burden on the poor in urban Lagos as expenditure on transport is about 20.0% of the household budget, second only to expenditure on food (LAMATA, 2008). Advantage of public transport are many; amongst them are its effective use of space, more energy efficient, emit less airborne pollutants, minimize the amount of land used for transport purposes including parking and generally result in better physical environment in urban areas (Ume, 1991; Somuyiwa, 2008). It has also proved to be an effective tool in combating congestion. Because of these numerous advantages that public transport offers, governments in the third world countries are now becoming aware that for developing countries to be more productive, improving public transport should be one of the most pressing items on their agenda. Transportation is a requirement for every nation regardless of its industrial capacity, population size or technological development. The current state of Nigerian transportation is a product of fifty years of colonial rule and the mismanagement of forty years of relative neglect under civilian rule. The thrust of this research however, is to examine the role of informal transport on public transport and inter-urban mobility in Lagos State.
STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM
The challenges facing urban centres like Lagos have continued to grow particularly within the past three decades. In fact, cities will increasingly face a seemingly worse situation in the near future as a result of the population explosion in these cities. The city serves as a hub for employment opportunities, shops, services and leisure activities and a host of other opportunities. Over the years, it has become the epicentre of economic and social life and has been called upon to accommodate increasingly varied activities and house a growing proportion of the population. According to Bailly (2008), it is highly likely that, in the year 2020, around 50 cities worldwide will boast population of over 1 Billion. It is this success which may lead to the downfall of the city if its growth in population is not managed properly, particularly the aspect transport, traffic management and urban mobility. Today mobility has become a key aspiration of an expression of individual freedom. As the years go by, public transport has a tough and challenging time ahead especially as population in cities like Lagos continue to geometrically increase. This need for finding a lasting solution for the constant mobility problems in Lagos has led us to actually evaluate the role of the informal public transport in ensuring inter urban mobility.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The major aim of the study is to examine the role of informal transport on public transport and inter-urban mobility. Other specific objectives of the study include;
H0: There is no significant impact of informal public transportation on inter urban mobility in Lagos state.
H1: There is a significant impact of informal public transportation on inter urban mobility in Lagos state.
H0: There is no significant relationship between informal urban transportation and inter urban mobility in Lagos state.
H1: There is a significant relationship between informal urban transportation and inter urban mobility in Lagos state.
The role of informal transport is a complex task in public transport management, which has a lot to do about inter urban mobility within Lagos state which has overtime experienced major mobility issues. Furthermore, ensuring smooth inter urban mobility in Lagos state is an essential task, which has important consequences for the economy of Lagos, social well-being of Lagos residents, the quality and sustainability of the urban environment and the efficiency and productivity of the urban economy. However, various researchers that have worked on the same or similar subject matter but these scholars have not touched the area of how these informal transports contribute to public transport and inter urban mobility in Lagos. It would be interesting to look into this section and see how informal transportation affects public transport and inter urban mobility in the study area and the state at large.
The study is restricted to the evaluation of the role of informal transport and inter-urban mobility in Lagos state. The study is limited to the transport managers in kosefe local government area of Lagos where informal transportation is prevalent with a relatively urban mobility. The study focused on the role of informal transport on public transport and inter-urban mobility.
LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview)
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
DEFINITION OF RELEVANT TERMS
Public transport: Public transport is transport of passengers by group travel systems available for use by the general public, typically managed on a schedule, operated on established routes, and that charge a posted fee for each trip
Urban Mobility: This can be said to be the whole of trips generated daily by the inhabitants of a city, and the methods and conditions associated with such trips (modes of transport selected, length of trip, time spent in transport, etc.)
Bus terminal: A bus terminal, or terminus, is the point where a bus route starts or ends, where vehicles stop, turn or reverse, and wait before departing on their return journeys. It's also where passengers board and alight from vehicles.
The study area of this research is Ketu and Magodo in Kosofe Local Government Area of Lagos State Nigeria. The Local Government Area is wide and located in the Mainland part of Lagos and share boundaries with some Local Governments in the state. Boundaries: Kosofe is one of the twenty (20) Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Lagos state. It was created on the 27th of November, 1980. In the North: bounded with Ojota to Alapere on Ibadan express, in the South: it is bounded with Oworonsoki-Apapa Express to Anthony, in the East: it is bounded with Oworonsoki Ibadan express to junction of Ketu, and in the West: it is bounded with Ikorodu road from Anthony to Maryland. It also shares a boundary with Ogun state. Its area of jurisdiction comprises of ten wards and encompasses an area of 178.85sq/km with its headquarters at Ogudu.
The indigenous dwellers of Kosofe LGA are mainly the ‘Aworis’ whose major occupation was mat-weaving, farming and fishing. However, due to its location as the gateway to Lagos State and the hospitality of the indigenes, Kosofe houses people from the northern and eastern part of Nigeria who engage in commercial activities in the various markets such as Mile 12 and Ketu markets. Another emergent class of dwellers in Kosofe area is top civil servant and officials who live in government residential areas of Magodo and Ogudu. Kosofe is a bustling commercial centre being the terminal for all food items and fruits from all part of the nation. This is understandable as Lagos state still remain the major market for all agricultural products from the hinterland. As a result, Kosofe is mainly occupied by traders, civil servants and elites.
There are over 35 communities in Kosofe LGA and these include: Oworosoki., Ifako, Sholuyi., Anthony village, Ajao estate, Ogudu, Ojota; Alapere, Orisigun, Kosofe, Ajelogo and Akanimodo; Ikosi, Ketu, Mile 12, Ayedere, Maiden; Isheri, Olowora, Shangisha, Magodo phase 1 & 2; Agboyi-1; Agboyi-2; Owode-Onirin, Ajegunle and Odo-Ogun among others. This study concentrated on five communities that are mostly affected by flood. This communities are Oworosoki , Ketu, Mile 12, Ajegunle and Isheri.
NPC (2006) puts the population of Kosofe at 682,772 people with 358,935 males and 323,887 females. Using the 3.18% growth rate (NPC, 2006), the projected population to year 2014 is 1,645,329.
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