Commercial drivers plying Bariga to Oshodi via the Ikorodu Road axis have allegedly macheted an officer of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, Obasu Godwin, to death.
Narrating the incident on Thursday, the General Manager of LASTMA, Mr. Olajide Oduyoye, condemned the alleged murder, describing it as “senseless and unwarranted”.
He noted that another officer, Adeniyi Hakeem, was assaulted by the operator of a Suzuki commercial bus otherwise known as ‘korope’, and others at Anthony area of Lagos State.
Oduyoye said, “Obasu Segun Godwin and Adeniyi Hakeem were attacked with machetes and other dangerous weapons by the driver of a commercial bus with registration number FKJ 452 YC, plying Bariga to Oshodi via the Ikorodu Road axis in cohort with some other drivers, after his vehicle was apprehended for contravening the Traffic Law of the State.
“The sad fact about the whole saga was that the two officers were in mufti and on their way home, having completed their morning shift and closed for the day before the recalcitrant commercial bus drivers went berserk, seeking any LASTMA officers to attack for carrying out their statutory duties.
“Obazu was struck severally with machetes resulting in deep lacerations on the head and his eventual death, while Adeniyi Hakeem, who was also attacked in a similar fashion has been hospitalised and in a coma.”
While noting that some senior officers, who were also in mufti and around the area were lucky to escape the mob attack, the General Manager warned “all cultists doubling as commercial bus drivers that any traffic violation or infraction shall be punished or penalised as enacted by the Lagos State House of Assembly”.
Oduyoye noted that seven of the culprits have been caught and handed over to the police while the driver of the bus and others are still at large.
The LASTMA Director of Operations, Mr. Bolaji Oreagba maintained that “this is a very sad event that could have been averted”, stressing that the incident would not deter the agency from carrying out its functions and duties as laid down by the Law of the State.
Commiserating with the family of the deceased officer, Oreagba lamented that “the state and the agency have lost too many good law enforcement officers to these lawless and recalcitrant motorists and this has to stop”.
A statement from LASTMA Assistant Director, Public Affairs, Filade Olumide, quoted Oreagba as promising to ensure that the injured officer, who is still in a coma at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, is well taken care of.