Operatives of the Lagos State Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit (Taskforce) on Thursday arraigned 13 workers of Seven-Up Bottling Company for assaulting Officers of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA).
Chairman of Task Force, Mr. Olayinka Egbeyemi a Chief Superintendent of Police disclosed in a statement that the enforcement team of the Agency arrested the workers after they assaulted LASTMA Officers and injured three of them.
Egbeyemi disclosed further that investigations revealed that the Officers were attacked while trying to tow a truck with registration number MUS 75 XX belonging to the company which was causing serious traffic gridlock.
He noted that it was an eye-sore seeing drivers of Seven-up trucks parking illegally on one side of the road thereby causing serious traffic obstructions to other motorists along toll gate area of the State.
“The prosecution of these 13 arrested workers became imperative to serve as a deterrent to others who might want to attack law enforcement officers in the course of enforcement of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu ‘Executive Order’ on traffic offenders across the State.
“It is disheartening that officers employed to safeguard members of the public are always being attacked by same people whose interest are being protected”, Egbeyemi said.
According to one of the injured LASTMA officer who was transferred to LASUTH for treatment, Mr Kazim Abayomi “most times drivers and workers of this company always engaged us physically with different weapons while trying to enforce traffic laws on their illegally parked trucks on the roadside”
The two other injured LASTMA workers, towing truck operators, are Anozie Peter and Demeji Tonade.
Meanwhile, Magistrate Olajuwon Amos of the Lagos State Mobile Court who presided over the case adjourned the commencement of trail to 8th of August, 2019 after they all pleaded not guilty.
They were all charged for ‘Assault and ‘Conduct Likely to Cause Breach of Peace’ under Part III, Item 26 of the Lagos State Traffic Sector Law.
Those charged to court include: Musa Lawal, Sanni Abdullahi, Okechukwu Amaeze, Dayo Sanusi, James Water, Okunola Femi, Awotoye Afolarin, Ibrahim Umaru, Usbie Stephen, Kelvin Arueyingho, Emmanuel Uche, Salisu Haruna and Jimoh Darihutor.