An Army officer, Isiya Usman, dressed in mufti and three others yesterday allegedly abducted an official of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Afeez Badru, who stopped him from passing the BRT Lane.
The incident allegedly occurred in Maryland, Lagos.
Badru was allegedly taken Marda Barracks, opposite St. Dominic Church, Yaba and detained for seven hours.
He was allegedly forced to write an undertaking that he vandalised the soldier’s bus and was responsible for the loss of his (Usman’s) phone, which he bought for N120,000 in Mali.
After written the undertaking, Badru was freed to the LASTMA men who came for his release.
An eyewitness said Badru and other LASTMA patrol team stopped Usman, who drove in Toyota Hiace bus marked KMC 648GE on BRT Lane.
He said: “As Badru tried to snap the bus, the man (Usman) came out with a dagger and started stabbing him (Badru). Three others in the bus came out to drag Badru into the bus. Their actions infuriated passersby, motorists and Okada riders. The motorcyclists smashed the bus’ back windscreen.
“The bus zoomed off. Motorcyclists chased it and blocked the road at Anthony bus stop. They tried to break the front windscreen before the soldier drove past them.”
A LASTMA official (name withheld) said Badru was beaten up in the bus.
“Badru’s phone got spoil in the process of dragging him into the bus. The three men in the bus used a big iron to hit Badru’s head while taking him away. He was also beaten up at the barracks,” he said.
The Nation learnt that the soldiers threatened to deal with some LASTMA senior officials that went to the barracks to rescue Badru.
“He was not released until he was forced to write an undertaking. The soldier said he bought his lost phone in Mali where he went for peace keeping assignment,” the LASMA official further said.
LASTMA Chief Public Affairs Officer Kole Adu decried the attitude of attacking LASTMA officials on duty.
He said: “The public, especially force men, should stop harassing our men. They should stop flouting traffic rules. The bus is even untainted. The attack is getting too many. We are out to ease traffic and serve the people, be it uniformed men and civilians. It is getting too many for God’s sake. They should allow our men to do their job. Our official, Rotimi Adeyemo, was killed by a uniformed officer last month. This month will be two years another official, Bakare Olatunji, was killed. This is getting out of hand.”
Army spokesman Lt. Col Sandu said the matter will be investigated and appropriate sanction will be meted out to the officer if found guilty.