It was a shameful sight yesterday, August 18, when two officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) took off their uniforms and engaged a commercial bus driver in fisticuffs.
According to The Nation report, the incident occurred at Anthony bus stop near Oshodi, Lagos, following the arrest of the driver for plying the BRT lane.
Recounting what happened, an eyewitness said one of the LASTMA officials smashed the windscreen of the TATA bus owned by the Ogo Oluwa Motors with his telecom’s device, after the driver of the bus refused to alight and hand over the keys.
Infuriated by this action, the driver and his conductor alighted and engaged in a free for all fight with the officials.
Motorists, commuters and passersby watched in astonishment as the men tried to stab one another with the broken windscreen glasses.
Some of the passersby who took pictures were harassed and their handsets destroyed by the LASTMA men.
Speaking on the incident, one of the passengers, Bashir Sanni said: “It does not matter what kind of offence that has been committed; that was not a wise way of stopping a bus driver. Is that the orientation given to them? How can he break a windscreen? You know how much it costs. If every defaulting bus windscreen was smashed anytime they misbehave, how many good buses would remain?”
Another passenger called for the dismissal of the officials for indiscipline.
When contacted, Bola Ajao, the public relations officer of the traffic authority, promised to investigate the matter, adding: “I doubt if our men were involved in the fracas; you know some people using fake LASTMA uniforms are everywhere now to perpetrate evils.”