The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), has warned motorists against beating traffic lights in Abuja.
Mr Wadata Bodinga, Director, Traffic Management, Transportation Secretariat, FCTA, gave the warning in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Abuja on Monday .
He said sanctions would be meted to anyone who violated traffic rules.
“Violation has decreased by 80 per cent, but the FCT is still there yet.
“Some people are still beating the traffic lights in the city. I can tell you that we are not where we want to be, but we are not also where we used to be,” he said.
Bodinga explained further that there was an ongoing upgrade on the traffic lights to enable the gadgets capture traffic data in all the junctions within the city, adding that it would soon be activated.
He said that once concluded, it would enable the traffic lights to pick and record traffic violators in real time where the violators’ vehicle details would be transmitted to the traffic light Control Centre.
“This means that once you have beaten the traffic light in FCT, you are doing it at your own peril, because you will pay dearly for the offence.
“You either pay a fine at the point of renewal of vehicle papers or other means which we are still working on. We are looking at all options.
“The intention is to ensure the safety and security of the motoring public in the FCT,” he said.
The director said that the FCTA has done a lot to ensure that traffic lights were functional to curb the rate of accidents, particularly on the intersections within the city.
He added that the accidents occurred mainly because the traffic lights were either not functional or not installed, stressing that the FCT Administration had taken steps to ensure all traffic lights were functional.
“If you go round the city now, you will see that the traffic lights are installed and functional across the city.
“This was made possible following FCTA’s robust collaboration with other countries, particularly China, under its China Aid Project, which provides raffic lights in about 98 junctions under the second phase of the project.
“Also, the FCTA has upgraded the traffic lights in other junctions, about 96 of them, to become accessible online.
“This is a massive improvement, and this is why the turn around maintenance is speedy and direct, because we are able to see a faulty traffic light by just a press of a button in the control centre,” Bodinga said.
Bodinga, however, identified the activities of scavengers and other miscreants, who were stealing the batteries that powered the traffic lights as a serious challenge.
He said that the batteries servicing the traffic lights in about 15 junctions within the city have been stolen so far by the miscreants.
“We are taking measures to see how we can tackle the situation. We are also calling on residents to report anyone attempting to tamper with the traffic lights to security agencies,” he said. (NAN)