Thursday, March 06, 2014

That LASTMA official who slapped a Chief Magistrate

Shittu, hiding his face after he was arrested and handcuffed for slapping a Chief Magistrate Pic: PM News

The moment I saw the name of the LASTMA official who slapped a Chief Magistrate last Wednesday, I felt like I knew him. 

When I read the story further down and learnt that the incident happened at Pen Cinema Agege, it clicked. 

Without any doubt at all, that was the same LASTMA official that harassed my wife and I at Pen Cinema early one morning in 2012. The name on his breast tag stuck in my brain for a very long time.

We were coming from the Iju end and trying to turn into Ogba side of Oba Akinjobi on our way to our offices about 6am. The light changed and we stopped. The chap came to us and accused us of not stopping quickly enough when the traffic light changed to red.

He attempted to arrest us but we protested. I asked him to show me the markings on the road that indicated where motorists were supposed to stop. There were none. We couldn’t understand the crime. The light turned red, and we stopped, clear of the way of vehicles passed by the green light. What more did he want?

He said we did not stop early enough and pointed back to where we ought to have stopped. I told him that we were in motion when the light changed from green to red without the interval of yellow and that I stopped the moment I saw the red sign.

He insisted I should open my door for a policeman to enter the vehicle, but I did not oblige him and alighted to argue my point. He argued loudly and rudely that I was mischievous and had no intention of stopping until I saw him.

But I told him he was wrong, and could not rely on clairvoyance to arrest motorists. I had not broken any law and would protest being arrested. The law says stop at red. I did. What was he saying about my intentions? Was he a sorcerer? 

I told him he was on foot, with no spike in his hand for my tyres, no gun or anything. I was piloting a moving vehicle. If I was bent on jumping the red light, he would not be in a position to accost me much less threaten me with arrest. I told him that the very fact that he walked up to me suggested that I had already stopped the vehicle.

The man was very stubborn o, and was completely impervious to truth. He would not back down. Our saving grace was that bystanders, including street boys attracted by the commotion that morning agreed we left a safe distance for the vehicles with the right of way. They told him to let us go. He insulted them.

His own colleagues attempted to pull him from the scene as the area boys around threatened to become violent if he arrested us. I had to resort to serious prayers for God to avert an escalation of the situation, lest we were accused of inciting area boys against law enforcers. Sanity later prevailed.

My wife said something that morning after I vowed to take the matter up with his superiors. She said I should leave him. ‘A ko ni tie niwaju’ (Translating roughly into ‘He will meet his match in future’) she said in consolatory tone.

Now, Taye Shittu has met more than his match. He allegedly slapped a Chief Magistrate, Mrs. Komolafe Abimbola over the same issue of traffic light at the same spot.

Shittu accused Mrs. Abimbola of not obeying the traffic light and ordered her to come out of her car.

The woman was said to have followed Shittu’s instruction after which there was an argument between them.

During the argument Shittu allegedly slapped Mrs. Abimbola and she sustained injury on her face.

The victim reported the assault at Pen Cinema Police Station and Shittu was promptly arrested by the police.

While confirming the incident, Lagos State Deputy Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Damatus Ozoani, said the accused will be charged to court after the conclusion of police investigation.

A former LASTMA official who asked for anonymity, told PM News that the attitude of Shittu was an embarrassment to the authority.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thats one bad egg out of many, serves him right there are still lots of his kinds out there time will surely meet-up with them.