John Shiklam in Kaduna
The Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Mr. Boboye Oyeyemi, yesterday visited the Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, following the state government’s recent ban on the personnel of the commission from operating within urban centres.
Speaking during the visit, Oyeyemi, expressed displeasure with the attitude of some of his men in the state, saying that major reorganisation of the Kaduna command of the commission was on the way.
“I learnt what some of our boys did, you don’t need to worry, I would carry out major reorganisation in FRSC in the state,” Oyeyemi said.
The state government had banned personnel of the FRSC from operating within urban centres across the state following complaints that personnel of the commission were extorting people and causing unnecessary traffic gridlock by erecting road blocks.
Oyeyemi said the FRSC is already focusing its attention on highways, adding that the responsibility of traffic control on urban roads were being transferred to state traffic agencies.
He disclosed that 16 states had since set up their traffic management agencies and “we are sharing responsibility by regulating their activities.
“I learnt that your state traffic agency started operation in January (2017), they would need proper training so that we can be on the same page and work to remove recalcitrant drivers from the road and save more lives,” the FRSC boss said.
He disclosed further that eight additional FRSC outposts were being set up along the Kaduna-Abuja highway with four on Kaduna side, while two would be sited along the bypass, one at the train station and one at the Kaduna airport.
He appealed to the governor to assist in equipping the emergency reception hospital at Doka to serve as a traumatic centre for accident victims.
Oyeyemi also lamented the overloading of vehicles by drivers plying the Kaduna-Abuja road.
“I’m worried about overload which I have witnessed along Abuja-Kaduna road up to Kano, putting people in the boot with rams. I’m working on it but can’t leave Abuja always, you need to help us about it,” he said.
In his remarks, el-Rufai said it was the decision of the state security council to ask men of the road safety corps to focus on the highway and allow state traffic regulation agency to man the urban roads.
He said: “We valued addition to the safety environment that FRSC brings to the table in our state. We did not ban road safety staff or activities in Kaduna State, it is a federal agency, we have no such powers.
“The relationship between FRSC and our traffic agency should be complementary and not duplicated efforts. FRSC should concentrate on highway and state agency should focus on urban roads.
“What led to this was series of complaints about checkpoints that cause accident instead of stopping such. If the road safety corps has been embarrassed, it is my duty to apologise.”