Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Racket at Yaba LCDA

Governor Fashola recently stated that  local government officials involved in "traffic management do not represent any local government. My personal experience begs to differ. 

point of arrest

Recently on my way back to Lagos Island from Yaba,I was stopped by a uniformed Yaba LCDA (Local Council Development Area). Uniform pictured below
 The officer said I had passed one way (pictures of the said one-way below) and that I would be cautioned. The  "caution" was that I would go back and pass the right route. I agreed and he entered my car. Once inside, he instructed me to drive to the LCDA office. 
(I was behind another car that was"arrested". Anyone plying this route would notice that cars driving North divert and face cars going South) like below. I was going South and yet was the traffic offender. 
I was in no mood to argue with the arresting officer.  A man pictured below approached me and asked where I was coming from, where I was going, where I lived and worked and I told him all except where I worked. He tried to make me offer him a bribe and I refused. I told him to let me know my fines and I would pay. He said I would do a psychiatric test, pay N25,000 fine, N500 gate pass and N2000 for tax clearance. When I heard the tax clearance, I asked why? I told him I don't have one, what if I am unemployed? I asked him to let me make some calls and after 5 minutes, he began to harass me for my keys and when I refused to hand it over, he told his officers to deflate my tyres. Then, I saw a man who looked like his boss, approached him  and told him what had  happened. He requested for the pictures they took of my offence ( which I was not allowed to see) and said it was one way. I mentioned the 2000 tax clearance fine and he asked who told me to pay that and I pointed to man pictured below. He requested for the booking sheet and changed my fine to N15500. I paid the fine. 

Trouble began when I requested for a receipt. Officer above issued the gate pass but was reluctant to issue a receipt. Booking officer (below) was also reluctant to issue a receipt.

After making a serious fuss and calling "the boss" that reduced my fine,a lady approached me, gave me N5000  and said the boss said it should be returned to me and I was given receipt below that did not state the full "offence"
I tried to reach the numbers of the LCDA chairman (Jide Jimoh on his number given on the LCDA's website)  and the Council Manager (Tunde Ojikutu) and the lines were switched off. Dear governor Fashola, miscreants are not running this racket. It is run by Local government staff and this is another example of the impunity that occurs in Lagos state. 

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