By Bisi Lawani, Akure.
Recently the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Odunayo Akerredolu, SAN inaugurated a special voluntary group that will work hand in hand with the State Vehicle Inspection Office of the Ministry of Transportation which he called Special Traffic Mayor which comprises eminent citizens of the state who are drawn from different sectors of the society.
One of the questions that came to the mind of people is, will they be looking for traffic offenders just like the Vehicles Inspection Officers or enforcing the registration of vehicle particulars in the state?
The Governor of Ondo state who was represented by his deputy, Hon. Lucky Aiyedatiwa Orimisan at the event highlighted some of the core duties of the group which first is to compliment the Vehicle Inspection Office of the Agency for Transport by enlightening the populace on the need to obey traffic rules and regulations using their vantage position in the society as opinion leaders.
You will agree that most Nigerians do not love paying fines rather they look for eminent people who will help them speak with the boss in charge in order to get a waiver. Bringing in this eminent people to the scheme of things will reduce the fashion of who knows who. In order words, the people that are supposed to beg for a waiver are now the people that are going to be encouraging the people to do the needful.
The nominated special traffic mayor’s were picked from the communities, religious, traditional and women groups. They are going to be leveraging on their positions in the community to bring change to the traffic management operation in the state.
Another expected role of the Road Traffic mayors is to assist in pulling available resources ( human and material) within their domain for the enhancement of traffic control activities particularly where there is need of immediate response to victims of accidents and road disasters.
Moreover, they will enlighten both drivers and commuters on how to prevent road crashes particular ly during the festive period.
This scheme will in future bring in young volunteers who will be advocates of safety on our roads.
Finally, the Permanent Secretary Agency for Transport, Mr Kayode Ogundele emphasized the need for this Special Road Mayors in his welcome address saying the thriving economy activities has resulted in heavy vehicular movement on daily basis on our roads and it will require the intervention of all and sundry to complement the ever busy schedule of the Police, Traffic Wardens, Vehicle Inspection officers and all other sister agencies in the business of vehicular flow.
Lawani is Press Officer, Agency for transport in Ondo State.