The Lagos State Government has said that eight officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) were arrested on Thursday at the Agege-Pen Cinema area of the state.
The state government said that the eight officials were apprehended for arresting some commercial buses at the Abule Egba area and subsequently demanding N7,200 bribe for each of the vehicles.
As a result of this, the state government said that the allegation brought against the eight LASTMA officials had been referred to the Personnel Management Board (Discipline), which could earn them outright dismissal if found guilty.
This was made in a statement issued by the LASTMA Public Affairs Officer, Mahmud Hassan.
The statement said, “The officials, who were attached to the Agege-Pen Cinema office were arrested last week. They are Adebeshin Adeola, Davies Idowu, Folashade Abolade, Shittu Lanre, Akinkotu Olusoga, Olowu Said, Olaoye Peter and Adebola Said.
“The duo of Adeshina and Idowu had earlier arrested two Lagos-painted commercial buses, with number plates FKJ 770 XT and KRD 558 XM, driven by one Olatunji Mayowa and Donatus Eze, respectively, at the Abule Egba area of the state for seat belt violation.
“The actions of the drivers were in violation of the Lagos State Traffic Law, and the buses were subsequently apprehended and taken to the Agege-Pen Cinema office of the agency.
“However, the matter took a new twist when the apprehending officials, in conjunction with the General Duty Officer, demanded the sum of N7,200 from each of the bus drivers before the release of their buses.
“The drivers, knowing the position of LASTMA on corruption, alerted the agency and marked currency were given to the complainants and collected by the officials in a successful sting operation organised and coordinated by the Provost Marshal of the agency, Mr. Femi Ajibosho.”
The statement said the provost marshal arrived when Abolade was about collecting N7,200 from Eze, while Mayowa’s marked naira notes were found on the official after a search.
Speaking on the matter, LASTMA’s General Manager, Mr. Olawale Musa, lamented that the action of the suspects might create perception challenge for LASTMA and Lagos State at large.