says traffic offenders escape because patrol vehicles are not enough
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Anambra State Road Traffic Management Agency ( ARTMA ) Mr.Patrick Chiezugo Obiefuna has berated incessant molestation of ARTMA officials on duty across the state by those he referred to as recalcitrant drivers.
Obiefuna said contrary to the erroneous impression that officials of the traffic agency were the ones harassing motorists, he pointed out that officials of the agency were trained to be civil on duty; that situations abound where drivers who drove against traffic fought ARTMA officials to escape punishment.
Obiefuna who spoke with our correspondent at ARTMA office complex Awka, explained that traffic offenders always looked for escape routes whenever they saw ARTMA officials on duty and in a bid to achieve their aim, they inflicted injuries on the traffic officials.
According to him, ” There is a point I need to mention here. Most of these drivers don’t respect uniform men. We had an instance that a trailer driver wanted to smash my staff. He was being stopped and before we knew it, he swapped and pushed him aside.”
” We have one that is also in the hospital now. He stopped a vehicle in building materials area of Ogidi and another vehicle came from another place and pulled the staff. The lady is in the hospital now. I witnessed another one with the commissioner for transport at Nkpor junction. My men directed a vehicle on the right way to use; the driver sped off. We would have recorded another casualty, if the ARTMA official was not careful.”
The ARTMA boss however stated that alot of innovations were in place to ensure proper traffic management on Anambra roads. He said that the state ministry of transport was currently identifying alternative routes to ease traffic especially with the advent of the ember months.
Another strategy he mentioned that would ensure sanity on Anambra roads was the introduction of code numbers for tricycle operators across the state. He said the codes when fully operational would help to end the era of what he described as ” one chance ” as well as help to identify real owners of the tricycles.
Obiefuna stated also that the commissioner for transport has created an online traffic command and control centre where information on traffic situations and the conditions of roads across the state would be received for rapid response.
He said that the Anambra State Road Traffic Management Agency required more patrol vehicles to trail and track offenders, emphasizing that most drivers who violated traffic rules escaped because the agency lacked enough patrol vehicles and personnel for their operations.