By OGHENEKARO AWODEHA,
Delta Governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, has warned motorists using the Asaba-Onitsha road, especially at the River Niger Bridge end, to desist from driving against traffic or risk being arrested.
Governor Okowa handed the warning while flagging off Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) end-of-year traffic patrol at Government House, Asaba.
The governor, who performed the ceremony with the Corps Marshal and Chief Executive Officer of FRSC, Mr Boboye Oyeyemi, commended FRSC for ensuring free-flow of traffic at the Asaba end of the bridge.
He warned that the government would arrest drivers and impound their vehicles when they drove against traffic.
According to him, no one is above the law and stringent measures have been put in place to ensure that anyone who violates traffic rules, especially driving against traffic, no matter how highly placed would have his vehicle impounded.
He said “anybody that drives against traffic, no matter his position, will have his vehicle impounded, because if everybody can just obey the road signs, traffic will flow more easily.
“Drivers will have to cooperate with FRSC to ensure free-flow of traffic this yuletide and I want to appreciate the FRSC for its diligence to duty.
“In the past, it used to be a nightmare to pass through the Niger Bridge but in the past four years, it has been different.
“We thank God too that though, it is a federal road, the state has fixed some bad portions to ensure free-flow of traffic and it is good that FRSC is ensuring that road users abide by the rules, because, all that is required is a little patience and caution.”
The governor appealed to motorists to be cautious and patient and obey all traffic signs so that incidents of accident and traffic gridlock would be reduced considerably.
He recalled that in the past, it was a nightmare passing through the River Niger Bridge, but he commended FRSC for deploying personnel to ensure that there was free-flow of traffic along that corridor.
“As a government, we also intervened by rehabilitating failed portions on the Benin-Onitsha road, including the Bridge Head and at Ubulu-Okiti end of the road and the free-flow of traffic is what we are all joyful about.
“I thank you for this and your continued commitment to the free-flow of traffic on our roads and I pray that every Nigerian will be as committed to their jobs as much as you are.
“I appeal to road users to obey road signs because most times they will want to be in a hurry, but if they obey traffic rules, traffic will flow much easier and everybody will get home safely.
“The law does not respect anybody whether he is the governor or any other person, so people must obey the law.
“Obviously, the Commissioner of Police will be told that anybody driving against traffic, whether you are a government person or a private person, that person ought to have his vehicle impounded,” he stressed
Earlier, Oyeyemi had said that he was in Asaba to brief the governor on strategies being adopted by the Corps to ensure that there was free-flow of traffic on the road during the Christmas season and beyond.
He thanked Okowa for undertaking repairs on some failed portions of the road, adding that the gesture had greatly improved the flow of traffic on the road.
Oyeyemi advised motorists to desist from driving one-way, saying that any defaulting vehicle would be impounded for at least one week.
“Let me assure you that with the support the State Government has given to the FRSC, my men are committed towards justifying that confidence reposed in us to ensure that commuters get home safely during the festive period.
“The governor frowns against driving against traffic and he has given appropriate directives which our men will implement strongly,” he added