A taxi driver, Mr Imeh Usuah on Thursday received an award from the National Orientation Agency (NOA) for returning N18 million, about $120,000, (About 18 Million Naira) left in his car by a passenger.
Governor Babatunnde Fashola of Lagos State will also receive N30,000 from the agency for stopping soldiers driving on the dedicated lane for Bus Rapid Transport (BRT).
Mr. Mike Omeri, Director General of the agency, said these in Abuja while giving the award of N30,000 to Usuah for his honesty and patriotism by returning N18 million to the rightful owner.
The taxi driver was also given an award for his courage to do the right thing when most people would have seen the money as a way to enrich themselves.
Fashola had on July 17 arrested two military officers who drove on the dedicated BRT lane in Lagos.
The two military officers were accosted on the BRT lane at the Outer Marina in Central Lagos, where Col. K. I. Yusuf drove in an army green Peugeot 406 with registration No BO1 – 150 NA and Staff Sgt Adeomi A.J, drove in a black Toyota Camry car.
Realising that the game was up, Yusuf came down from his car, saluted several times and kept muttering: “I am sorry, very, very sorry” with the governor enquiring why, a senior military officer, chose to break the law instead of preserving it.
Fashola described as very unfortunate the fact that those who ought to stand in defence of democratic values were the ones violating them.
Omeri said that every Nigerian that did good including Fashola would be honoured by the agency.
The NOA DG, who eulogised the exemplary life of the taxi driver said that every Nigerian “who toed the path of honesty and displayed a rare integrity must be celebrated”.
He said that for Fashola to have shown courage by stopping the soldiers on the lane meant only for the BRT bus, NOA would not hesitate to honour him.
Omeri said the award would be given to any Nigerian irrespective of status or class that showed act that depicted the values and culture of Nigeria.
The DG said that those who often saw Nigerians in bad light should desist from that and began to see her in good light, adding that peace, honesty and love was a Nigerian factor.
He said that for Usuah, a taxi driver, to have returned N18 million showed that Nigerian still had men and women of integrity.
Usuah, who plies the airport road in Abuja, said he was at the car wash when he discovered there was a bag left behind after dropping the man off in a hotel and immediately returned it.
“My mind went back to the man who I dropped at the hotel and I immediately alerted my chairman and he instructed me to go back to the place where I dropped him. I saw him and delivered his bag to him.“
Mr Oche Elias, who represented the Minister of Aviation, said it was a rare display of honesty, adding that it was “a huge integrity and trust exhibited by Usuah”.
He said that with that act, the country’s image was being corrected, adding that everybody should be involved in the image management of the country.
Elias said the aviation ministry would organise a dinner in his honour to show to the world that integrity paid.
- PM News