The head office of the Federal Road Safety Commission in Lagos was sealed Wednesday as rampaging youth attempted to gain access into the premises.
The FRSC office at Isheri Road, Ojodu, Berger, also houses offices of the Lagos State Traffic Management Agency (LASTMA) and Vehicle Inspection Office (VIO).
On Tuesday afternoon, a truck speeding along the Isheri Road ran into children returning from school and continued on his way. The driver was later caught several kilometres away from the accident scene and brought back to Ojodu Police Station.
Witnesses said over 13 persons were killed in the accident but the police put casualty figures as two dead and 12 injured.
Irate youth attacked the police station with stones and other objects but were dispersed hours later after a reinforcement arrived from the Area F Police Command.
On Wednesday, the Lagos State government announced it had shut down the schools around the Ojodu Berger area till next year.
Cause of accident
The exact cause of the accident is still unknown.
Some accounts attributed it to a brake failure of the truck, others said FRSC and LASTMA officers were pursuing the truck after it ignored the stop signals by the traffic officials, and the driver lost control of the vehicle.
Police say the truck driver is now in custody and investigations are ongoing.
Hours after the accident, the FRSC and LASTMA exonerated their officers from the accident. While the former said their officials were only called after the accident, the latter said none of its officers were “within the vicinity” of the incident.
It was gathered that hoodlums had staged a protest over the victims and were attempting to gain entrance into the headquarters, just as they did during last year’s #EndSARS protests when they wreaked havoc on the buildings and properties in the premises.
On Wednesday, police patrol vans were stationed outside the FRSC headquarters in Ojodu.
There were no uniformed officials within sight. Plain-clothed officials and area boys kept watch at the locked gates and visitors were turned away.
A PREMIUM TIMES’ journalist who took photos of the locked FRSC gates was physically assaulted by an FRSC official and his ID card and camera phone were confiscated.
The items were later returned to him after the photos had been deleted.