Zebra Crossings may land Lagos ‘big men’ in trouble

Lagos State Special Offences (Mobile Court) has said that it is set to enforce compliance with the traffic law concerning zebra crossing, especially as it relates to ‘big men’ who violate the law in the state in order to ensure that wherever such signs are located, pedestrians must be allowed to freely walk across the road.

This was just as the agency disclosed that it had arrested about 5,000 traffic offenders in various locations in the state and also convicted over three quarter of the number, since it was launched in February 2016 by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode.

Coordinator of the agency, Mr Femi Alabi, disclosed this at the weekend while speaking with newsmen in his office, saying that the body was planning, as a first step, to enforce the traffic law pertaining to the zebra crossing around government secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos State, which has a lot of influential people.

According to Alabi, the mobile court intended to carry out enforcement to enable it to apprehend some of these high-profile individuals notorious for violating traffic laws to  demonstrate that government and laws are no respecters of anybody.

He also said the enforcement was to bring about attitudinal change, that wherever one found the zebra crossing signs, motorists must allow pedestrians to cross the road freely without molestation or running over such pedestrians.

“One of the things we are planning now is for us to have zebra crossings around Alausa where we have these big men. We intend enforcing this law, because we know that we are going to be able to catch a lot of these individuals.

“That will send signals to members of the public who are considered to be big men to know that yes, and indeed, the government and the law is not a respecter of persons.

“We want to bring about this attitudinal change that wherever you find a zebra crossing, once you see a pedestrian about to cross, you are meant to stop and allow the person to pass by,” Alabi said.

It will be recalled that last February, Lagos State governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, inaugurated five mobile courts to try traffic offenders across the state, with the offences ranging from driving against traffic; parking in places not designated for such to dropping and picking passengers on expressways, particularly, by commercial bus drivers.

The courts sit in Ikoyi, Ikeja, Ikorodu, Egbeda, among others, where, according to Alabi, people called and requested for their services.