LG officials not authorised to arrest traffic offenders, says Lagos State Government.

Lagos State government, on Tuesday has asked Lagosians to report any official of the 57 local governments and council development areas arresting motorists for violating traffic rules, saying only officers of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, have the right to impound vehicles and arrest violators.

The state government, through the Commissioner for Transportation, Oluseun Osiyemi gave the clarification while answering questions after presenting the achievements of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in the transportation sector since 2019, on the first day of the 2024 Ministerial Press Briefing held at Bagauda Press Centre, Alausa Secretariat, Ikeja.

Participants at the briefing had raised questions on activities of local government officials who impound vehicles and arrest motorists at will and charge them exorbitant fines before their vehicles are released.

Osiyemi said Lagosians should not allowed themselves to be extorted by fake people parading themselves as staff of Ministry of Transportation

“ Lagosians should not allow themselves to be extorted. Local governments do not have traffic officers. They can not arrest motorists for traffic offenses. LASTMA is the only agency allowed by Lagos traffic laws to arrest traffic offenders. Lagosians should report any local official violating this law,” he warned.

Osiyemi further said over 5,000 commercial motorcycles known as Okada have been impounded in the last two months by the task force.

The commissioner also debunked insinuations that only private vehicles are targeted by government agencies, adding that commercial vehicle owners that violate traffic rules are arrested in large numbers and made to pay fines.

Speaking on the progress made in solving the Apapa gridlock, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Sola Giwa noted that 90% of the business activities in Lagos are done in Apapa which accounts for the constant traffic in the area.

He however assured that efforts are being made to totally rid Apapa of traffic.

Giwa further said the state government is collating data on the number of commercial buses in the state, noting that all commercial bus operators are required to register with Lagos Metropolitan Transport Authority, LAMATA, before operating on Lagos roads.

While clarifying on the duties of officers of the Central Business District, CBD, as compared with that of LASTMA, Giwa noted that the two agencies work together to enforce traffic rules in central business areas of Ikeja, Apapa, Lagos Island and Lekki.

On the issue of penalties for plying one-way, the former General Manager of LASTMA and now Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Olawale Musa said there are no fines for driving one-way.

He however said any motorist arrested for driving one-way would be made to go for a psychiatric test after which he would be charged to court and jailed.

The General Manager, Lastma, Mr . Olalekan Oki was on ground at the briefing and other stakeholders.

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