The Lagos Police Command, on Sunday, commenced the enforcement of traffic law across the state as mobile courts have been positioned in strategic places to prosecute offenders.
The Lagos Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, said the exercise, which would be carried out between the hours of 6am and 6pm on daily basis, isaying it is to ease the incessant traffic problems in the state as well as curtail accidents caused by those who drive against traffic.
The police boss declared that anybody caught driving against traffic or along BRT lane or without driver’s license, be it motorist, motorcyclist or tricyclist; whether commercial or private, would be arrested and prosecuted accordingly.
In a meeting with stakeholders comprising members of transport unions and other traffic agencies, at the Police Officers Wives, POWA hall, Ikeja yesterday, Imohimi disclosed that 650 policemen had been deployed to man and arrest offenders at designated routes in Lagos.
Lamenting the menace caused by traffic offenders in Lagos, he said: “The impunity with which traffic laws are being flaunted has called for caution and it won’t be acceptable anymore, even with law enforcement officers.
“Lagosians and visitors disobey traffic laws as regards driving against traffic, driving on BRT lanes and driving without required documents.
“We must collectively fight this in order to restore orderliness on our roads.”
Sixty routes in the state were noted for abuse of traffic rules which include: Akpongbon bridge, Obalende bridge, Idumota( inward Iddo), Marina and Victoria Island, all under Area ‘A’ Command Lion Building. The routes which were categorised under 13 Area Commands, included Ijora, Marine bridge , Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, under Area ‘B’ command; Ijora Badia, Ojuelegba under bridge, Murtala Muhammed Way, Oyingbo junction and Ogunlana drive to Marshal Kilo, all under Area ‘ C’ Surulere command.
Identified routes under Area ‘D’ command known for traffic congestions included Cele (inward Mile Two), Cele (inward Ago – Okota), Oke-Afa (inward Ejigbo), Ijesha express, Mushin Ojuwoye street and Fadeyi, among other routes.
The Police boss informed that the Police, as the lead agency in law enforcement would deploy 50 men to each of the designated routes while other traffic management agencies such as the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) and the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) would have not less than five of their officials at the designated routes, while the transport unions would deplore one of their task force officials to the locations.
Addressing heads of the traffic unions, the CP admonished them to inform their members who do not have required driving documents to iff the road in order not to risk their vehicles or okada from being impounded.
Imohimi, who disclosed that the exercise is not to generate fund, warned the law enforcement agents against distortion and or any form of corrupt practices such as demanding money from any offender, threatening that any policeman caught would be demoted in rank and the supervising officer queried.
He also warned Lagosians not to tempt any of the policemen with money if caught.
He declared that offenders would be given opportunity by the mobile courts to get the correct documents before their vehicles or motorcycles could be released to them.
Meanwhile, the Transport Union Workers pleaded with the police command to give them some time for their members to get the required documents before being prosecuted, maintaining that the notice period is too short for them.