[dropcap]D[/dropcap]riving in Nigeria with no C-Caution and Fire Extinguisher on board remains a bookable traffic offence, warned the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC).
In a media release early this week, Commander Bisi Kazeem,Head, Media Relations and Strategy, FRSC, explained that the commission temporarily suspended charging motorists for not having the two items in their vehicle, for only one month as against the impression by recent media reports.
He stated: “The attention of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) has been drawn to the insinuations being made by some members of the public consequent upon its recent directives on booking of certain traffic offences including Fire Extinguishers, Light Signs Violation and Caution sign.”
“The suspension was temporarily done in the light of the observations by the operations department of the FRSC National Headquarters to the effect that these offences were secondary offences which should not take precedence over the primary offences especially during the operations zero when the operational focus was on ensuring free flow of traffic and avoidance of anything that could undermine it.
“Consequently, it must be further stated that the directive was in no way meant to permanently stop the FRSC patrol teams from enforcing laws on non possession of fire extinguishers, Light and Caution signs on motorists that violate them as provided for in the FRSC Booking Sheet.”
A recent circular from Deputy Corps Marshal in charge of Operations, Ojeme Ewhrudjakpor further clarified the commission’s stand on the directives, reaffirming that “the suspension of booking of fire extinguisher (FEV), Light Sign Violation (LSV) and Caution Sign (VSC) was for one month of operation Zero (16 December 2016 to 16 January 2017 when the focus was on free flow of traffic.
“The suspension was therefore part of the activities and directives to Commands of the FRSC to ensure non-impediment to the free flow of traffic with the anticipated high vehicular movements,” the circular stated.
“For the avoidance of doubt, these offences are secondary offences that would be booked alongside primary infractions,” it added.
Deputy Corps Marshal Ojeme further stated that the suspension of the booking of the offences will be lifted at the termination of the ongoing operation zero on 15 January 2017 as directed by the Corps Marshal, who is the Grand Commander of the operation.
It would be recalled that Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi had earlier given clarification on the directives when he urged Nigerians not to misinterpret the content of the earlier circular that was leaked to the press a few days ago and widely circulated on social media.
The earlier circular signed by Deputy Corps Marshal, Ojeme Ewhrudjakpor, on behalf of the Corps Marshal, directed commands of the FRSC across the country to avoid booking drivers for the offences of fire extinguisher, Light signs Violation and Caution Signs, which some motorists enthusiastically welcomed as a relief and applauded the FRSC for the measure.