The Nigerian Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has addressed the viral video of some of its officers clashing with a tricycle rider in Benin City.
In the video of the incident which took place on Saturday, July 18, a Nigerian man was seen stripping naked and attacking an FRSC officer after his vehicle was seized.
The FRSC officers, numbering about four, in turn, descended on the man, hitting him repeatedly while he held on to their patrol vehicle.
Watch the video of the incident below:
In a long statement released on Sunday morning, the FRSC chided those criticizing the conduct of the FRSC’s officers in beating up the man.
The road safety body took sides with its officers, writing that the officers were acting out of self-defence and applied “commensurate force” on the tricycle rider who resisted arrest by going naked and attacking one of the officers first.
Part of the FRSC statement read: “It is also disheartening that a section of the motoring public could criticize the Corps personnel who in self-defence, applied some commensurate force on the criminal in question in order to restrain him from further attack on the unarmed personnel and damage to the patrol vehicle.”
The FRSC also warned the public to desist from vandalizing its property and physically attacking its officers while on duty.
In 2019, four FRSC officials were accused of beating a 36-year-old man named Odion Omafo Samuel to death and burying his body in a shallow grave. The incident also took place in Edo State.
Read the full statement by the FRSC concerning the viral video:
“The Federal Road Safety Corps has noted with dismay the unruly, defiant and rebellious attack that resulted into an unprecedented degree of damage to both FRSC personnel detailed on patrol operations and the patrol vehicle by a tricycle operator in Benin, Edo State.
The tricycle rider who was arrested in Benin, along Benin/Sapele road for driving against traffic, went berserk at the point of arrest, stripped himself naked, and started throwing obstacles on both personnel and the patrol vehicle while at some point, even dragged the patrol operatives in uniform. During the attack, the man tore the staff’s uniform and not only damaged the windscreen of the patrol car, but disfigured the bonnet and other body parts with mud and stone.
The Corps wishes to register its displeasure at the incessant abuse of its personnel and damage to its property across its formations nationwide by unruly people and warns that this, like other unwarranted attacks, is highly unacceptable and the Corps will do everything within its legal strength to ensure that this act does not go without due punishment under the law.
After going through the viral video, the Corps wonders why a section of the motoring public has continued to abuse unarmed personnel whose only fault is to ensure the safety of lives and property on the road? The Corps has therefore resolved never to condone such barbaric acts and damage to either its personnel or patrol vehicles any longer and is prepared to use this case to serve as a deterrent to others who are fond of molesting law enforcement agents.
It is also disheartening that a section of the motoring public could criticize the Corps personnel who in self defence, applied some commensurate force on the criminal in question in order to restrain him from further attack on the unarmed personnel and damage to the patrol vehicle. The motoring public is hereby warned to note that , though the FRSC is civil in nature and discourages physical attack on offenders, this does not mean members of the Corps should watch and allow physical damage on its property and personnel in the course of their legitimate duty.
The Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi, however, commends the patriotic citizens that assisted in arresting the criminal and condemned his actions. This shows that some Nigerians will always stand by the truth and nothing but the truth.
The Corps Marshal, has also ordered the prosecution of the perpetrator of that crazy act of humiliation and recklessness on law enforcement agents and noted that offenders who take undue advantage of unarmed personnel will not be spared any longer.
The Corps Marshal wishes to remind members of the public that law enforcement agents serve the common interest of the general public and deserve to be respected and not humiliated in the course of their duty.”