A large percentage of Lagos residents, motorists, commercial motorcyclists, popularly called ‘Okada riders’ and other road users have criticized the newly signed Lagos State Traffic Law as having too harsh penalties for traffic offenders.
The traffic law which was signed by the Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola on Thursday August 2nd, 2012 includes a raft of penalties including psychiatric, breath and urine tests, fines and prison terms for traffic offenders in the state.
Most people believe the law is too stringent with high fines and prison terms placed as punishment for offenders.
However, some people have given the kudos to the state government for the bold step to restore sanity on the roads where many lives have been lost due to recklessness.
The Traffic Law which has 59 offences and penalties for each offence covers all road users including private motorists, commercial drivers, commercial motorcyclists and trailer/heavy vehicle drivers.
Here are a few of the offences and their penalties:
|Disobeying Traffic Control Personnel||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Failure to lead to right of way of pedestrians at a zebra crossing||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Smoking while driving||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Exceeding prescribed speed limit||N100,000||Imprisonment for a term of one year or both fine and imprisonment|
|Tailgating an emergency vehicle||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Assault on a traffic officer (physical)||N100,000||Imprisonment for a term of 3 years or both fine and imprisonment|
|Wrongful overtaking of another vehicle||N100,000|
|Parking on the walkway or kerbs||N20,000|
|Vehicle causing obstruction on the highway if broken down||N50,000; cost of towing|
|Making or receiving phone calls when driving without hands free||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Counting money or otherwise engaged in activities while driving||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000|
|Driving without a strapped seatbelt for both driver and passengers||1st Offender N20,000, Subsequent Offender N30,000||Strap on seat belt|
What do you think about the laws and their penalties? Are they too harsh or would you give kudos to the Lagos state government for the traffic laws?
For the full list of the traffic laws, click here