Legal Nigeria

Lawyer seeks to jail FRSC chief

Activist-lawyer Mr Tope Alabi has initiated contempt proceedings against the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Chief Executive Boboye Oyeyemi for allegedly disobeying a court order barring the corps’  to impose fines on motorists.
The Federal High Court in Lagos, last September 26, nullified FRSC’s powers to fine motorists for violating traffic rules.
Justice John Tsoho held that only a court could an pronounce a motorist or driver guilty of violating traffic rules and order them to pay a fine.
The judge, who delivered the verdict in a suit by Alabi, said FRSC is not empowered to impose fines under sections 10 (4) and 28 (2) of the FRSC (Establishment) Act 2007 because it is not a court.
According to the judge, FRSC could arrest motorists for traffic offences, but it must take them to mobile or other courts with  powers punish traffic offenders.
However, Alabi is contending that FRSC officials had not complied with the judgment which he said is yet to be set aside by the Court of Appeal.
Besides, he said FRSC did not apply for or obtain any way execution of the judgment.
Therefore, he filed a Notice of Consequences of Disobedience to Order of Court, dated August 20.
The notice warns the Corps Marshal Oyeyemi of being held liable for contempt if his men continue to violate the order by arresting and imposing fines on erring motorists without taking them to court.
It reads: “Take notice that unless you obey the directions contained in this order, you will be guilty of contempt of court and will be liable to be committed to prison.”