By Chigozie Chukwuleta
Henceforth, drivers caught driving against traffic in Anambra State will be subjected to a mental health test to ascertain their mental state.
Another group of people to go through such a test are those found fighting the personnel of the Anambra State Road Traffic Management Agency (ARTMA).
This was disclosed by the MD/CEO, ARTMA, Mr. Pat Obiefuna, during an interview with Newspathfinder in Awka, recently.
He said that the issues of individuals, especially keke and shuttle buses drivers fighting staff of the agency when apprehended and intentionally driving against traffic remain a major challenge of the agency.
According to Mr Obiefuna, the agency is set to nip in the bud such unwholesome acts, and that “anyone that we get fighting our personnel will not go scot-free. First of all, we have to go and ascertain his or her mental state if it is okay. Then the person will go and clear with the authorities. After which he or she will still go and pay the stipulated fine for [the] offence committed.
“Same thing applies to those people driving against traffic. This time, we are out and ready to ensure that our roads are sanitised. Let there be sanity. The present administration is fully committed to this.”
He enjoined road users to maintain orderliness as a stitch in time saves nine. “If you are on the road, maintain your lane, don’t switch unnecessarily. If there is a slowdown of traffic in front, definitely there must a cause, be patient. Because it will not take time, with proper management it will clear.
A situation where you see the red light and the next thing you start turning… Turning to do what? To drive against traffic. Before you know it, [an] accident will happen.”
The road traffic boss said the agency expects drivers to apply decorum and be civil in every way so that the roads will be free for everybody.
“What we expect from them is obedience. Let them apply decorum. Let them go with us and flow with the government. The roads and the state belong to all of us.”
He informed that the agency is involved in a reorientation campaign and public service announcements which they hope will go a long way to arresting the situation.
”They need to know that we are here to serve them, ndi Anambra. Anybody in uniform should be respected. Elsewhere, they obey the law. Our own should not be different.
“The governor wants a smart city for Anambra. And being a smart city, a lot of things come into play. Things cannot be the way it used to be again. People need to know all these things.”