By Adedapo Adesanya
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has deployed over 30,000 of its officers and men to commence end of the year Special Patrol tagged Operation Zero Tolerance to Road Traffic Crashes in a move to save lives and ensure safe travels this yuletide season.
The Corps equally set up 15 traffic control camps, 27 help areas, and 46 ambulance points, along critical routes of Nigeria to complement Operational and Public Education efforts.
The routes to be covered are Akwanga-Lafiya-Makurdi, Jos-Bauchi-Gombe, Sokoto-Tambuwal-Jega-Birnin Kebbi corridor, Katsina-Kano-Wudil-Dutse-Azare-Potiskum corridor, Kaduna-Saminaka-Jos corridor, Abuja-Kaduna-Kano corridor, Okene-Ogori-Isua-Owo corridor, Makurdi-Otukpo-Obollo Afor-9th Mile corridor, Asaba-Abraka-Ughelli-Warri corridor, Ibadan-Ogere-Sagamu corridor, Sagamu-Mowe-Lagos corridor, amongst others.
The Corps Public Education Officer, Mr Bisi Kazeem, added that operational equipment are also being deployed and they include: patrol vehicles, advance life support ambulances, heavy-duty tow trucks, medium and light-duty tow trucks, patrol motorbikes, extricating machines, reflective jackets, traffic cones, patrolites and radar guns.
Others are Breathalyzers, Cameras, E-tablets, Alcoholizers, Walkie Talkies, CUGs and tyre pressure gauges.
In addition to the deployment of the above operational tools, and in the quest for improved service delivery and effective Patrol Operations, the Corps Marshal further invested in advanced Information and Communication Technology to beef up its operations.
The new technology which includes body cameras and vehicle cameras that have been fully deployed shall be used for patrol operations, surveillance and traffic monitoring, rescue operations, and real-time information gathering for decision making.
While noting that the operation has already begun, the spokesperson revealed that it will be foreclosed on January 15 2022.
He highlighted the objectives of the operation as follows: Reduction of Road Traffic Crashes, fatalities and injuries; Ensure travellers comply with COVID-19 Health Protection Regulations 2021; Prompt response to road crash victims; Removal of obstructions; Ensure free flow of traffic; engage in aggressive Public Education; and provision of travel advisories.
In his words; “the targeted enforcement which the Corps Marshal Dr Boboye Oyeyemi has directed all operatives to address is not limited to excessive speeding, dangerous driving and overtaking, Tyre violation, lane indiscipline, road obstructions, use of phone while driving, overloading, seatbelts violation, child safety, passenger manifest violation, mechanically deficient vehicles, and vehicles conveying unlatched containers”.
Additionally, Mr Kazeem stated that the Corps Marshal who believes that a crash-free celebration is possible has equally tasked all senior Officers in FRSC Academy, FRSC Training Schools, and those at the National Headquarters who were also deployed to different parts of the country to pick up the slacks to ensure the mandate of the Corps for safe travels is achieved.
In this regard, the Corps Marshall directed that Mobile Courts sit throughout the Operation across the Nation and that all Commands must remain on alert after January 15, 2022, to have a near crash-free 2022, where possible.
In line with the foregoing, the special patrol is to run in shifts as follows 0600hrs – 1400hrs, 1400HRS – 2000hrs, 2000hrs – 2200hrs, and Night Rescue teams to be on standby at all operational Commands.
The Corps will go into the exercise in collaboration with Special Marshals, Military Units en-route or resident, The Nigerian Police Force, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Department of State Security, State-owned/NGO’s Ambulance service providers, National Network on Emergency Rescue Services (NNERS) and Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA).
While urging the officers and men to show special consideration and attention to road users in line with the Corps’ service orientation, the Corps Marshal further called on Nigerians to cooperate with law enforcement agents and ensure maximum compliance with all directives on restrictions and physical distancing.
He also stated that the National Traffic Radio 107.1 FM will continue to operate 24/7 to give real-time traffic updates. As such, he called on all travellers to take advantage of the Station, Situation Office numbers: 07054005754, 07054005712 08056294021/08056295022, and the FRSC Toll-Free numbers 122 to report any obstruction, crash or gridlock witnessed on the road for the prompt intervention of the nearest command.
Daily N800 Fee Covers Personal Income Taxes of Drivers, Others—LASG
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Lagos State Government has clarified that the newly introduced N800 daily Consolidated Informal Transport Sector Levy in the state was a structure put in place to reduce multiple taxes, dues and levies to all agents of state and local governments.
On Tuesday, the Commissioner for Finance, Mr Rabiu Olowo, at a ceremony in Alausa, officially unveiled the scheme along with other stakeholders. It was to harmonise dues collected by the government from commercial motorists at parks and garages across the state.
The commercial drivers were asked to pay a flat fee of N800 daily with effect from Tuesday, February 1, 2022, and it covers local government levy, fee for clearing waste from motor parks and personal income taxes of the drivers, with tax cards issued to them.
According to Mr Olowo, “The N800 is a single structured collection of the monies payable to all government agencies and parties who are directly or indirectly associated with the transport sector.
“What the government has done is to organise the collection and reduce the multiplicity of levies and all sorts of taxes, dues and monies due to government from the transport unions.
“Bus drivers will get tax cards, and the issue of arbitrary payments will be eradicated once they pay from the point of their loading each day.”
However, the Chairman of the Lagos State chapter of the National Union of Road Transport Workers Union (NURTW), Mr Musiliu Akinsanya, popularly known as MC Oluomo, emphasised that the daily N800 fee does not include the union’s normal statutory levy.
“The harmonised levy will not affect the national union ticket. What it is aimed at consolidating are all the levies collected by the government and it was the unions that approached the government to help us harmonise the payment of all the levies it has been collecting to prevent duplication of levies,” the transporter said.
The Special Adviser to Governor Sanwo-Olu on Transportation, Mr Toyin Fayinka, while also speaking at the event, said the development is the first approach towards a total restructuring of the transport sector.
According to him, all stakeholders were duly consulted before the final signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which is aimed at bringing sanity into motor parks in line with best practices globally.
Residents Gear up for Closure of Dopemu Road for Three Months
By Adedapo Adesanya
Residents of Agege, Dopemu, Egbeda and environs are gearing up for the closure of Dopemu Road in the Agege area of Lagos State for three months by the state government for repairs.
The state government had announced on Sunday via a statement by the Commissioner for Transportation, Mr Frederic Oladeinde, that the Babajide Sanwo-Olu Road would be closed from 10 p.m. on Friday, January 21 to enable the rehabilitation and upgrade of the facility.
According to the Commissioner, the repairs would be done in three phases, with the first phase to focus on the Ipaja Road up to the Adealu Street junction, which would last three months.
He stated that alternative routes have been mapped out by the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) to ensure effective control of vehicular movements along the axis, during the duration of the repairs.
Mr Oladeinde advised motorists inbound Dopemu Bridge from the Iyana Ipaja/Alagba axis to go through Ipaja Road to connect Oyewole Street into Seriki Street.
He said the movement would link them to Kolawole and Adebambo Streets, to access Adealu Road, to their desired destination.
“In the same vein, motorists heading toward Dopemu Bridge from Ipaja (Oke Koto) are to utilise Markaz Road to connect Awori Street and link Sarumi Alawo Street/Oniwaya and Surulere.
“With this, they will continue their journey or alternately, go through Alfa Nla from Old Ipaja Road, to connect Oniwaya/Surulere axis to reach the Dopemu Bridge.
“The alternative routes are in motorable conditions and will not pose any difficulty to motorists. We are also assuring that the LASTMA personnel will be at the diversion routes for efficient traffic management.
“I must commend Lagosians for their perseverance through the myriad of constructions going on across the state,” Mr Oladeinde said.
He then called for support from the residents, while assuring them that their sacrifice would yield the desired outcome for the state’s multi-modal transportation system.
OYRTMA Gets New Operational Commands in Ogbomosho
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
To further enhance the safety of road users in the state, the Oyo State Road Transport Management Authority (OYRTMA), has established a new operational command at Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) and four other areas in Ogbomosho.
This development was confirmed by the Executive Chairman of OYRTMA, Dr Akin Fagbemi, during a working visit to the agency’s new commands in Ogbomosho on Tuesday.
He added that the new move will enhance administrative and operational effectiveness in the Ogbomosho zone, revealing that the agency now has more officers and men in the zone.
“We acknowledge the significance of Ogbomoso zone to the growth of the economy of Oyo State. Therefore, it is pertinent we do all within the ambit of the law to ensure free flow of traffic in the zone,” he said.
Mr Fagbemi said the mandate given to the agency by Governor Seyi Makinde is to operate effectively across the state and not just restrict its operations to a zone, thus the creation of the new commands in the Ogbomoso zone.
Meanwhile, the OYRTNA chief also used the occasion to pay a courtesy call to the Ogbomoso North Local Government Chairman, Mr Kabiru Akanji Adeoye.
The council boss expressed satisfaction to the agency for its timely intervention in issues pertaining to effective road traffic management, crash prevention, post-crash care and general road safety matters in the zone.
He emphasised that the total clampdown melted on ‘One-Way’ offenders by OYRTMA officials in the Zone has helped to significantly zero down cases of road crashes and saved the lives of numerous individuals.
“Before now, we only see and hear about OYRTMA’s activities in the State Capital, Ibadan but today, it is a great pleasure that the agency has not less than five specialised commands in Ogbomoso zone including the one newly created to ease traffic along LAUTECH and its environ,” he said.
Speaking further, he said: “Also, OYRTMA routine operations has helped us reduce crimes through the checking of Number plates and impounding vehicles, motorcycles etc without a fully registered number plate.”
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