A lawyer, Mr. Tope Alabi, has initiated contempt proceedings against the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) Chief Executive, Boboye Oyeyemi, for allegedly disobeying a court order barring the corps’ imposition of fines on motorists.
The Federal High Court in Lagos on September 26 last year nullified FRSC’s powers to fine motorists for violating traffic rules.
Justice John Tsoho held that only a court of law can pronounce a motorist or driver guilty of violating traffic rules and order them to pay a fine.
The judge, who delivered the verdict in a suit filed by Alabi, said FRSC is not empowered to impose fines under sections 10 (4) and 28 (2) of the FRSC (Establishment) Act 2007 because it is not a court.
According to the judge, FRSC can arrest motorists for traffic offences, but it must take them to mobile or other courts which have the powers to punish traffic offenders.
However, Alabi is contending that FRSC officials have not complied with the judgment which he said is yet to be set aside by the Court of Appeal.
Besides, he said FRSC did not apply for or obtain any stay of execution of the judgment.
Therefore, he filed a Notice of Consequences of Disobedience to Order of Court, dated August 20.
The notice warns the Corps Marshal Oyeyemi of being held liable for contempt if his men continue to violate the order by arresting and imposing fines on erring motorists without taking them to court.
It reads: “Take notice that unless you obey the directions contained in this order, you will be guilty of contempt of court and will be liable to be committed to prison.”
Justice Tsoho had held that FRSC cannot turn itself into a court of law by punishing those that commit traffic offences.