By Monsuru Olowoopejo
No fewer than 40 motorists have forfeited their vehicles to the Lagos State Government after driving against traffic.
This was disclosed by the General Manager, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, Mr. Wale Musa, after Magistrate Lateef Owolesi, ruled that 61-year-old, Thomas Onnoghen, Yusuf Ajibade and Sodiq Hassan, would forfeit their vehicles to the state government.
Musa, in an interview with newsmen at the LASTMA Headquarters, Oshodi, disclosed: “In the last few weeks, 40 vehicles have been impounded while driving against traffic. They have all been forfeited to Lagos State government.”
According to him, “Once your vehicle is impounded for driving against traffic, the person will forfeit the vehicle to the state government. After that, the government decides what to do with the vehicles. It becomes the government property. ”
He noted that Onnoghen and others that have forfeited their vehicles to the state government was meant to serve as a deterrent to other drivers still aiming to drive against traffic in Lagos.
While lamenting that several passers-by have lost their lives to one-way drive, the General Manager said “by the time we start plying one way we compound the problem of the traffic, it becomes very difficult for the officers to handle, and it is also very dangerous for passers-by.”
“We really need to tame this tide and that is why we are telling members of the public to stop plying one-way. There are vital things we must learn before you drive on the road. It is not when you get to the road that we begin to teach you the road signs. If you do not know the rules please do not play the game.”
Vanguard observed that some of the offenders were arrested last year, but their trail could not commence until this year.
The general manager explained that some of the motorists absconded after their vehicles were impounded for driving against traffic in the state.
“You have to give them time to come. Some people ran away when you apprehend their vehicles , they don’t come to court and we don’t have the power to confiscate the vehicle, it’s only the court that can confiscate a vehicle, so, they need to come to court and the court makes a pronouncement.”