The Nigeria Police Force have dismissed two traffic wardens, three weeks after they were found to have extorted N15,000 from a motorist in Abuja.
Shuaibu Suleman and Musa Muktari were dismissed on Tuesday, according to a statement issued by the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Ibrahim Idris.
The IGP warned that the police would not condone corrupt practice among serving officials.
“Two traffic wardens, Musa Muktari, Force Number; 394120 GDI and Shuaibu Suleman, Force Number; 10627 GDII, attached to Wuse Police Division, FCT Abuja Command have been dismissed from service with immediate effect for corrupt practice”. Mr. Idris said.
The dismissal of the two wardens came after a motorist (name withheld) filed a complaint to the Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit, PCRRU, Force Headquarters Abuja on May 30.
The complainant stated that while driving his vehicle on May 29, at about 12:30pm along Wuse Market road, he was accosted by the two Traffic Wardens who accused him of “beating traffic light” despite the fact that he did not.
“That the wardens started demanding for bribe before they will allow him go and they led him to an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) not far from the scene where he was forced to make a withdrawal of Fifteen Thousand Naira (N15,000) from his account which he gave to the traffic wardens”.
He also stated that that one of the wardens forgot his mobile phone in his car.
According to police, the PCRRU immediately launched an investigation upon receiving the complaint (Tracking Number PCRRU475669), and both traffic wardens were identified and apprehended.
The police added that the sum of N15,000 they extorted from the complainant was recovered from the wardens (N7,500 each, as the money was already shared).
The statement said both wardens were subsequently referred to the Force Provost Marshal at the Force Headquarters, Abuja for Orderly Room trial, during which witnesses were called, exhibits presented and defaulters (both wardens) heard.
The probe by the orderly room panel, according to the statement, found the two wardens guilty of abuse of office, soliciting and receiving a bribe contrary to Paragraph C sub (IV), (VI) and (II) of the 1st Schedule of the Police Act and Regulation CAP 370 of 1990.
The statement added that the adjudicating officer found both defaulters guilty as charged and recommended punishment of dismissal from service.
“The orderly room proceeding has been reviewed by the appropriate NPF authority and the punishment approved with immediate effect.
“Traffic warden Uniforms, ID cards and all police accoutrements issued to the men have been retrieved and all other dismissal procedure completed,” the police said.
The statement added that the extorted sum of N15,000 had been handed back to the complainant with an apology from the PCRRU.
“The visibly delighted man while collecting his money said “I never thought this could happen in this country; the officers punished and my money returned to me. God bless the IG, I will go out and spread the news about PCRRU to everyone”.
However, the IGP, Mr. Idris, has commended the complainant for exposing the unprofessional and unacceptable conduct of the traffic wardens.
“We will not allow corrupt practices to continue.”
“IGP equally enjoins members of the public to make use of the PCRRU platform which is available 24/7.
“PCRRU says No to Impunity. As promised, our quick response will put a smile on your face,” the statement added.