Fashola warns LASTMA, KAI against extortion of Lagosians

Lagos Governor, Babatunde Fashola

Government is completing formalities for admitting KAI agents into the Civil Service.

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The Lagos State governor, Babatunde Fashola, has warned officials of the Lagos State Transport Management Authority, LASTMA, and Kick Against Indiscipline, KAI, to desist from extorting money from Lagos residents under the guise of carrying out their duties.

Mr. Fashola, who spoke to the officers over the weekend, urged them to always discharge their responsibilities in a way that would not portray the state in a bad light.

“Your primary responsibility is to move traffic. If you have to make a choice between moving traffic and letting an offender go, let the offender go. I don’t need him; we need to keep traffic moving because moving traffic is the economy,” Mr. Fashola told the LASTMA officers.

The governor told KAI officers that their primary responsibility was to keep Lagos clean.

“It is very simple because really and truly we cannot deliver on our responsibility to save life and property if the city is dirty. Disease will thrive in a dirty environment. But keeping Lagos clean does not mean harassing market women. Keeping Lagos clean does not mean seizing their goods because they are part of this economy,” Mr. Fashola said.

“There are very few people within both organisations, and I stress that word, a few people within both organisations who want to give you a bad name and we must move very quickly to find out those people and show them where they belong,” he added.

Mr. Fashola urged the public to look out for people who may want to pose as KAI or LASTMA officials to dupe them with fake uniforms of any of the agencies without name tags, warning that such people were not government staff.

“We have done so much with your crests and with your name tags and I use this opportunity to appeal to members of the public to look out for those who may want to pose as KAI or LASTMA officials to dupe them with fake the uniforms without name tags. They are not our staff,” Mr. Fashola said.

He appealed to officials of the two agencies to do their jobs with compassion and the understanding that their salaries are being paid by those they serve, adding that with such understanding, they would be more disposed to treating members of the public with respect and compassion.

The Governor, who said the Government was completing the formalities for admitting the members of KAI into the Civil Service, assured the 52 newly employed officials that they were not being left out as was rumoured in a report.

“Let me assure you that nobody will be left behind. I understand that you are anxious, but you must understand that this is a process. It has taken almost two years; but slowly and surely it is coming close to its objectives. Our reforms and development for your career is not finished, I am going to surprise you even more and that goes for LASTMA also. But you have to show me, you have to show Lagosians that you are worth the effort,” Mr. Fashola said.

Mr. Fashola also told the officers that the issues arising at this period of elections were tied to their jobs, urging them to fight to keep their jobs.

“We have given them to you and now it is for you to defend them. You know what the opposition thinks about our tree planting policy. We saw 100,000 jobs, they saw cosmetic.

“But those gardeners, those plumbers, those welders who wake up every morning to say, “I am going to work”, know that it is not elitist. Those who collect seedlings and collect money to feed their families know that it is not elitist.

But as I said, one of the Parks that came out from the elitist programme was where they chose to go and hold their rally. So the truth is that they like what you are doing; they just don’t want to accept it,” he said.

“Those faking your uniforms and those of your members committing fraud and spoiling the agency’s name are threatening your jobs so you must stand up to protect what is yours. For KAI the same thing applies. Educating people about where to keep their wares and about where to dispose of their refuse is better than seizing their goods.”


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