Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Dr. Boboye Oyeyemi, wants Okada riding outlawed in Nigeria, and traffic offenders jailed; to serve as a deterrent to others.
Boboye has also advised the Lagos State Government to redouble efforts on its inter-modal system of transportation, as a solution to the gridlock in the state.
Oyeyemi said this, yesterday when he delivered the first distinguished lecture of the School of Transport, Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo.
The theme of the lecture was ‘Transportation And Road Safety Management: Achieving The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Nigeria.’
He condemned motorists who assault traffic regulatory officers, who tried to correct or apprehend them for reckless driving or violation of traffic rules.
“In fact, I wish that whoever is caught making calls while driving is made to pay N100,000 fine and subjected to mental stability tests.
“Traffic laws are to serve as a deterrent.
“The level of lawlessness and overloading among commercial bus and tanker drivers is alarming,” he lamented.
The Corps Marshal also described Okada riding (commercial motorcyclists) as a product of inefficient transport system in Nigeria, saying it should be outlawed.
He described Okada riders as the most lawless and violent set of road users. “Okada is not supposed to be on the road.
“They have no room in the transportation system of the country.
“All the 36 states of Nigeria should provide high powered buses for transportation combined with the rail system…
“Rising trend in morbidity and mortality rate due to Road Traffic Crashes (RTCs) in low and middle-income countries has led the WHO to declare road traffic crashes an epidemic,” he said.
Oyeyemi said an estimated 90 percent of passengers and freight in Nigeria relied on the road network, with the attendant challenge of the increased number of RTCs.
According to him, road infrastructure, in particular, represents, if not the engine, the wheels of economic activities in most developing countries, Nigeria inclusive.
In his address, Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Transport, Dr. Taiwo Salam, urged Nigerians to change their attitude to government infrastructure and work toward maintaining them for their benefit.
Salam, who also represented the Deputy Governor, Dr. Femi Hamzat, said the current situation of poor traffic regulation in Lagos is so because the past administration tried its best in terms of infrastructure, but did not do much of enforcement.
On his part, Vice Chancellor of the Lagos State University, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, lauded the calibre of personalities at the event and described the lecture as insightful.
Fagbohun promised that the university would do a follow-up on the recommendations and outcome of the lecture, and carry all stakeholders along.