Group launches campaign against extortion on South-East roads.
A group, Youths and Students Advocates for Development, YSAD, yesterday, launched a campaign against extortion on roads in the South-East zone. YSAD said the campaign is aimed at educating private and commercial road users including all transport unions on traffic rules which must be obeyed to avoid unnecessary extortion.
The campaign tagged ‘no dey give’, ‘follow traffic rules’, is meant to use all lawful means to end the menace of extortion, harassment and other forms of abuses by security personnel in uniforms on roads as well making their toll-free lines available. Launching the campaign in Aba, Chief Executive of YSAD, Mr. Obinna Nwagbara, lamented that Nigerian roads have become where officers of various security and paramilitary formations brazenly extort and harass road users into parting with various sums for known and other undefined offences. Nwagbara said that YSAD is determined to end extortion on South East roads where motorists are randomly exploited just for driving on the road. “We are presently collaborating with government agencies and members of the organised private sector and other critical stakeholders to challenge the tradition of extortion by officials paid from the public treasury.
“YSAD would also engage the Nigeria Police Force, Federal Road Safety Corps Nigeria and the hierarchy of road traffic management agencies in the states to explore ways of moving away from the current extortionist system. “Traffic management is not a platform to raise revenue either for the government or private individuals, stressing that it is bizarre that so many security agencies are now competing with proper revenue-generating agencies on who raises more money periodically.” YSAD also noted that the ENDSARS protest which engulfed Nigeria in October 2020 and threw the country into confusion was triggered by this same menace of extortion by security agents and warned that Nigeria does not need to experience such again to address this abnormality. The group tasked road users to obey traffic rules and be courteous to the officers when accosted in order not to create some ground for extortion as seen presently that has turned Nigerian roads into illegal cashpoints.
“The campaign shall also be vehement in opposing acts of official irresponsibility and gross indiscipline such as the recent event in Abia State Polytechnic, Aba, where an officer of the Nigeria Police Force reportedly raped an 18-year-old student, leading to protest. “YSAD would insist that Nigeria must be a nation of order and those assigned with the sacred task of enforcing the law must do so decently, responsibly and with a good sense of accountability, to the people.
“We shall use tools of traditional and new media to engage in this campaign which is expected to run until June 2022. We shall also organise events starting with our Youth Summit on Human Rights and Police brutality coming up this October here in Aba. “We shall also adopt any measure we consider legitimate and relevant in this very important campaign aimed at restoring sanity on our roads and the society at large.”
This campaign is supported by Voice
Remember to spread the word. #StopExtortion #RoadNoBeBank
Culled from Vanguard Newspapers.