Why we invigorated Abuja traffic policy, by minister

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Muhammad Bello, has said that the road traffic policy was re-invigorated in the city to save lives and not to inflict hardship on residents.

Bello stated this at the weekend in Abuja during the public presentation of the policy for a safe, functional and efficient transport system in Abuja.

He explained the need for attitudinal change on the part of road-users and the measures taken by the FCT administration towards ensuring adherence to traffic regulations.

“The measures are to save lives. People must realise that breaking traffic laws is unacceptable.

“Journeys that ought to take a short time take much longer, simply because many road-users decide not to follow basic rules of traffic within the city. It is manifested through parking on pedestrian walkways, ignoring pedestrian bridges and zebra crossings, driving against traffic, overloading and parking at undesignated areas,” he said.

While stressing that there was no ban on tricycles and motorcycles in Abuja, the minister added that “the law does not permit them on expressways or driving against traffic” as they are inclined to do.

His words, “There are designated areas for motorcycles as well as tricycles, and we are trying to emphasise that.

“Our objective is to save lives; to make the human life valuable the way it’s supposed to be. And how can we do that? We have to make sure that all traffic regulations are adhered to. The advantage we have is that all these are covered by the law and we are going to use the provisions of the Nigerian constitution, the laws of the highway code, the FCT Transport Regulations, the National Road Traffic Regulations and other traffic laws.

“We are going to back that with robust support from the judiciary so that all those that violate traffic regulations and protocols are made to pay for it because that is the only way we can guarantee the safety of lives of our people.”

He, however, noted that the number of high capacity buses had been increased to cover the routes illegally plied by the tricycles, while the recently commissioned Abuja Light Rail would serve as alternative mode transport for residents.

The minister assured that additional coaches would be made available for the Abuja light rail before the middle of next year, while 10 additional metro stations on the Abuja Airport line would be opened to ease the traffic on the roads.

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