Motorists have cried out over resurgent cases of traffic robberies in Lagos State as hoodlums reportedly attack commuters at night and in broad daylight.
It was gathered that on some busy highways such as Ojota-Ketu-Mile 12 axis manned by police, miscreants loitering around pounce on motorists held in traffic and break their windscreens in an attempt to rob them.
Investigation revealed that in some cases, the thugs forcefully demand money from drivers with a threat to attack them if they fail to accede to their demand.
Our correspondent, who passed through Ojota at 9am on Monday, witnessed moments a dark-complexioned young man in shorts and T-shirt waltzed into the side of a black Prado Jeep stuck in traffic gridlock around Freedom Park.
The fellow knocked on the front windscreen and vehemently asked the driver to give him money but the latter resisted. As the thug attempted to bring out a weapon, the driver, a middle-aged man, quickly handed a naira note to him. He fled into the lawn afterwards.
Our correspondent observed that there was a cluster of policemen and their vans stationed some metres away from the spot where the incident happened.
A co-presenter of a TVC programme, Your View, Tope Mark-Odigie, also shared her encounter with two traffic robbers on Alapere Bridge, inward Ojota around 7pm last Friday.
Recounting her experience during the Monday edition of the programme, Mark-Odigie said one of the assailants shattered her windscreen as she struggled to evade the attack.
She stated that two days before the incident, a friend had told her of how he was robbed in traffic between Oworonshoki and Ogudu and his windscreen broken.
She recalled, “On Friday (November 12), I had an event on the Island. On my way back around 7.30pm, the attack took place on Alapere Bridge inward 7up. Because I am conscious of the fact they usually rob (in that area), I had been looking around and saw policemen stationed around the bridge. They always park (their patrol vans) there. They clustered around a young man on the floor; maybe they caught one of the robbers.
“Barely two minutes afterwards, I was flanked by two men and they were hitting the windows. I swerved to one side and one of them ran away. I got to another lane and the other guy on my side kept hitting until he broke the glass. I kept on struggling in traffic because there wasn’t much space to manoeuvre.
“There was a trailer by my side; I kept manoeuvring until I was able to escape. I think other drivers were aware of what was going on and the little they could do was to make room for me to move. There were glass shards on my body.”
She and her co-presenters urged the state government to light up the road and other highways, especially those notorious for traffic robbery.
Another presenter, Mariam Longe, also lamented that she and her husband had been robbed along Apogbon Bridge on different occasions.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, CSP Adekunle Ajisebutu, said the command was addressing the menace by intensifying security across the state and raiding criminal hideouts.
He said, “Security has been beefed up in the area (Ojota) and other parts of the state. The Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu, has directed all the Area Commanders, DPOs, tactical teams and other field commanders to provide watertight security in every part of the state before, during and after the Christmas and beyond.”
“In compliance with the directive, the officers have increased the presence of policemen through proactive and visibility policing as well as raids of criminal hideouts.”Follow us on social media