Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State has ordered the temporary suspension of the Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIOs) from the roads in the state with immediate effect.
It was gathered that Ambode, while handing down the directive, as a result of public complaints, ordered the officers to stay away until further notice.
The Punch quoted sources in the Ambode-led administration as saying the removal of the officers from the state’s roads was to reposition the outfit.
“The story on a painter, whose car got burnt in VIO’s custody, caused a discreet investigation into the activities of the outfit and I can tell you that the report was not palatable.
“Apart from this, complaints about the overzealousness of some VIO men have reached a high level.”
“The governor, who said he would not tolerate any highhandedness in his administration, ordered them out of Lagos roads until further notice,” one of the sources said.
Speaking on the development, a VIO source, however, said the governor only told them to leave the roads and go on ‘compulsory retraining on the use of modern technology in order to be humane in dealing with the public,’ adding that the VIOs would be back on the road soon.
It is understood that the training had been arranged since the officers left the road last week.
Also speaking, the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde, said nobody had hindered the VIOs from performing their duties.
He said, “The truth is that the transport ministry is undergoing restructuring, including the VIOs. The commissioner for transportation had made some recommendations, which he will present at the State Executive Council meeting and things can move forward from there.
“But we all believe that the VIOs’ activities should be technologically driven and more. These will be seen soon.”