The official of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) caught on video camera negotiating a bribe from a motorist is on the run.
Governor Babatunde Fashola made this known at the re-launch and induction of the Special Traffic Mayor Corps in Ikeja where he gave an assurance that the corrupt official, who has been declared wanted, would soon be apprehended and made to face the law.
“That fellow in LASTMA, I am told is on the run, we have declared him wanted and we will get him. Be sure about that, we will get him, and as soon as we do, we will give him all his rights and he will have his day in court.”
Admonishing the elite group of LASTMA officers, Governor Fashola reiterated that the primary purpose for the establishment of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority was to keep Lagos traffic moving. He insisted that the process of arresting any erring motorist should never be made a priority ahead of the primary assignment.
He reminded the officers that if traffic was kept moving, the quality of life of the average citizen would improve as less hours would be spent in traffic and more money saved by the motorists and commuters on the roads.
Mr Fashola also commended the medium through which the LASTMA official was indicted, saying “I want to salute the citizen that got that video for us on his camera, we must name, we must shame and we must use that kind of medium to fish out all the bad eggs in our society, give them a face that the public can see, and bring them to justice.”
An official of the Lagos State Transport Management Agency (LASTMA) has been caught red-handed demanding bribe from a motorist who is suspected to have broken the Lagos traffic law deliberately to expose corrupt law enforcement agents in the state.
The motorist, driving on Alfred Rewane Road, Ikoyi, Lagos state, was stopped at the Golden Gate Chinese Restaurant junction, recorded an amateur video and sent it to the iWitness platform of Channels Television.
The yet-to-be identified LASTMA official accused the motorist of beating the traffic light.
As penalty, the motorist was charged the sum of N8,000 and was escorted to the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) to withdraw the cash to settle the officer.
It will be recalled that a police officer, Chris Omeleze, caught on film soliciting for inducement by an unknown motorist was dismissed by the Nigerian Police Force.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Kayode Opeifa, has said that officials of the State Traffic Management Authority have no right to drive impounded vehicles.
Mr Opeifa made the disclosure in an interview with newsmen in Lagos on Tuesday.
“It is unlawful for LASTMA official to drive vehicles that contravened the law, except the arrested motorist resisted arrest or has no driver’s licence, which is the only guarantee for any driver to be on the road.
“We have been hearing reports of our men driving arrested vehicles. However, in the course of driving the vehicle, if there is an accident, the officer involved will be held responsible.
“My advice is that when a vehicle is arrested, the offender should cooperate by coming to Alausa to redress the issue, which at times, after scrutiny, the offender may be allowed to go without any punishment,” he said.
He also advised LASTMA officials to stop chasing unruly motorists, but rather, they should book their vehicles.