Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Sanwo-Olu Didn't Bring Back VIO So As To Generate Revenues For Lagos – Fashola

 The Lagos State Vehicle Inspection Services (VIS) has described as untrue reports in some quarters that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu brought back it back on the streets in order to generate money from Lagosians.

Former governor Akinwunmi Ambode banned the VIO officials from the road but they were returned by Governor Sanwo- Olu after his assumption of office.

Some Lagosians have claimed that part of the sins why Ambode was denied a second term was because of the ban on the VIS which led to a drop in revenues accrued to Lagos state.

However, speaking with Daily Independent on Tuesday, Akin-George Fashola, the Director of VIS in Lagos said the agency is set up to ensure sanity on the roads and not a revenue generating agency.

He however said the agency can generate money for the state government as vehicle owners who flout traffic laws are fined so as to serve as deterrent to others.

He said if all Lagosians comply with traffic laws and ensure they have all necessary documents, there is no way VIS officials will impose fines on them.

“The fact of the matter is, VIS is not a revenue generating agency. But as a consequence of what we do, we generate money for the state. Now, you will agree with me that if you do not break the law, there is nothing I want to fine you for”.

“Like I said, as a consequence of people flouting the laid down rules, that is where the fine comes from. If you do what you are supposed to do, there is nothing I can fine you for”.

“VIS is not set up to generate revenue unless you break a law”. If Lagosians don’t break the law, then VIS will not generate any revenue. That is my simple answer to that. We are not after revenue generation. It is as a result of what people do and that is where the revenue comes. If you obey the rules and regulations, nobody will fine you for anything”.

On why the agency was banned by the former governor and why it was restored by Govenor Sanwo-Olu, Fashola said it was for VIS to go back to the drawing board and come back to the roads reformed so as to carry out its operation in accordance to global best practices.

“The initial ban, I believe by the former governor was to allow VIS as an organisation to go back readdress itself on how they pursue their operations in a mega city like Lagos”.

“During that time, we went back to look inwards and look at how we can pursue our statutory duties in line with global best practices. I think it was at that point that we came to the realisation that technology is one of the ways we can do it”.

“Having said that however, technology has its limitations although it affords you access to a lot of things you can’t do before. It gives better efficiency and also gives a free and fair process for everyone across boards. With the new government, we had a situation where it was virtually impossible for technology to address some aspect of traffic regulations”.

“Technology cannot address the issue of driving a rickety vehicle on the road. I think what most people forgot during the period was told to stay off the roads was that it is still your civic responsibility as a vehicle owner to keep your vehicle in proper order until you get the prescribed particulars that you are supposed to get”.

“A lot of people didn’t take that seriously. Some did it, some didn’t do it. We now have a situation where we have a lot of very bad vehicles on the road. But technology cannot remove these vehicles on the roads, so we have to physically remove them. That is what VIS is back to do on the roads”.

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