9 Fake Taskforce Officials Arrested

•The arrested fake taskforce officials

•The arrested fake taskforce officials

At least nine fake taskforce officials were on Thursday arrested at Ijaiye area of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria for extorting money from motorists.

The fake taskforce officials were said to belong to the Ijaiye-Ojokoro Local Council Development Area, LCDAs and are being used to collect revenue for the council from motorists plying the area.

Officials of the Lagos State Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offence (Enforcement) Unit swooped on them while collecting money illegally from motorists plying the area and arrested nine of them.

The illegal taskforce officials were putting on orange reflective jacket when they were arrested and claimed they were working for the Ijaiye-Ojokoro LCDA.

The taskforce officials swooped on them after a tip off through test message as members of the public had been complaining of illegal extortion and harassment by the fake taskforce offcials. They stormed the area unannounced and made the arrest with none of the alleged culprit being able to escape.

Those arrested are: Arisi Ajetunmobi, 53 (Oyo State), Adeyemi Adedapo, 50 (Osun State), Abiodun Abayomi, 32 (Ogun State), Kolade Abiodun, 30 (Ekiti State), Babatunde Jeremiah, 24 (Oyo State), Famakinwa Felix, 28 (Ondo State), Seun Oyewale, 23 (Ondo), Akeem Olaofe, 28 (Lagos) and Oluwashina Tayo, 25 (Ogun State.

The fake taskforce officials were paraded at the taskforce office at Alausa and later arraigned in court for operating a parallel taskforce with the legal one and for extorting money from the public.

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Taskforce Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman, Chief Superintendent of Police, said those arrested claimed to be traffic officials of Ijaiye-Ojokoro LCDA and warned other Local Governments operating such illegal outfit to desist from it as the taskforce would not spare anyone disturbing the peace of the public and extorting money from them.

‘Local Government engaging in this act must stop. They should desist from harassing the public. We already have LASTMA and the police. Those arrested have been charged to court to serve as deterrent to others.

“Other Local Governments involved in this illegal act should desist from it as no amount of personal contact will make us change our mind,’ he stated.

The taskforce chairman said touts were also arrested with the fake taskforce officials and warned touts to stay away from harassing members of the public by extorting money from them, saying that the taskforce would continue to go after them.

Last week, six fake officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA were arrested at Lagos Mainland area of the state for extorting money from the public and harassing them. They claimed they were working for the Lagos Mainland Local Government.

—Kazeem Ugbodaga 

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