by Stanley Azuakola
“The law has been enacted and we are ready to enforce it.” And with that pronouncement by the Lagos State commissioner of Police, Umaru Manko, the advice for motorists and cyclists in Lagos is –brace up.
Manko, who was represented by the deputy commissioner, Tunde Sobulo, at a special stakeholders meeting on the Lagos State Road Traffic Law which held at the Lagos Television Ground Ikeja, said that the police was now ready to enforce the new law 100 percent.
“Before this law was passed, we have been trying to use native way of doing things, such as puncturing the tyres of vehicles that ply one way. We are passionate about this law and we will do everything to make it work. The law has been enacted and we are ready to enforce it,” he said.
He charged motorists to report police officers who “try to capitalise on this law to extort money,” promising that they would be appropriately sanctioned.
The commissioner also said that the problem with the Nigerian police is the people because if the people support the police, the law would work.
Similarly, the Lagos State Government has recruited Neigbourhood Watchers, Community Development Associations, CDAs, Community Development Committees, CDCs, community leaders, among others to assist it in enforcing the ban on commercial motorcycle riders from plying 475 roads in the Lagos metropolis.
“We are doing this for safety and security purposes. Where you have lots of okada, there will be stealing in the area. We only banned them from plying 475 roads out of the 9,100 roads we have in Lagos.
“We called you here so that you can know this law and that the law is in your own interest. In all these roads we banned okada and tricycles from; we have public buses plying them. All the chairmen of local governments were called to bring the list of roads in their domains which okadas should not ply,” he stated.
“Community leaders should ensure compliance by okada riders. Tell them we don’t want them to ply those roads in your domains we banned them from plying. When okadas leave, there will be security,” he added.
Manko also ordered that henceforth no police officer in the state should use siren. He said that the inspector general of Police was in Lagos over the weekend and did not use siren, hence it made no sense for any other officer to do use it.