The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) has denied that it was complicit in the passing of Modibo Usman, who died from cardiac arrest.
Denying a news report titled, “Hypertensive man dies as bribe-chasing LASTMA men seize vehicle” the traffic management agency noted that its officers only engaged Usman after the vehicle that was conveying him broke traffic laws.
“The attention of the management of Lagos State Traffic Management Authority has been drawn to a newspaper report that claimed an individual named Modibo Usman died from cardiac arrest as a result of an encounter with its officers,” the agency said.
Explaining that, “On Friday, July 22, 2022, Mr. Usman was driven in his car by his son who ran the traffic signal light and, therefore, violated the Lagos State Traffic Law. The vehicle was subsequently impounded by LASTMA officials.
“After the incident, Usman and his son requested to disembark at a nearby medical laboratory for a previous appointment and later visit LASTMA’s office to resolve the traffic offence issue. The officers obliged and took the impounded vehicle to the premises of the agency.
“A video of discussions between the deceased and LASTMA officers is available and its contents are totally at variance with the incident reported in the newspaper.
“It has also become a regular practice for traffic violators to conjure untruths about our officers demanding bribes in order to release impounded vehicles. Such individuals rarely provide evidence to substantiate claims made in such instances.
“Unfortunately, the Punch reporter did not explore the cordial relationship with LASTMA to determine the accurate course of events before publishing the news story.
“For clarification, our officers had departed the scene of impounding the vehicle and were not privy to events that led to the demise of Modibo Usman.
The agency then commiserated with the family of late Usman. “LASTMA commiserates with the family of Modibo Usman on the sudden and unfortunate loss.
“Members of the public are encouraged to remain law abiding at all times as LASTMA would continue to enforce compliance with the law in a responsible and professional manner.
“Residents should please report any case of unprofessional conduct of its personnel to the Agency in order to curb indecent behaviour among some of its officers,” the agency said.