LASTMA van crushes bus conductor to death in Lagos

A 44-year-old bus conductor was allegedly crushed to death by a vehicle belonging to officials of Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, yesterday, at Cele Bus Stop, along Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, while the bus driver was avoiding arrest. The incident caused a riot as hoodlums attacked LASTMA officials and also invaded their office at Cele, destroying several vehicles’ windscreens.

It was also gathered that trouble started for the deceased, identified as Ikeckukwu Abasirim, after the driver of the bus, with an unknown identity, was ordered to stop by LASTMA officials at Mile 2, over an unknown offence.
The driver of the bus was said to have ignored the order, an action that reportedly led to the LASTMA officials chasing the vehicle.
On arrival at Cele Bus Stop, passengers in the commercial bus disembarked, while the conductor was busy calling in passengers, unknown to them that they were still being trailed by the officials.
Eyewitnesses revealed hat the LASTMA vehicle blocked the commercial bus, while one of the officials held Ikechukwu and attempted to force him into their operational vehicle.
‘How he died’

One witness said: “In the ensuing struggle, one of the officials was said to have swept the conductor off his feet.
“He fell and at that moment, the LASTMA official at the wheel was said to have moved the vehicle. The tyres went over Ikechukwu’s skull, killing him on the spot.”
Others said that on-lookers raised an alarm which attracted hoodlums who pounced on the two LASTMA officials.
A trader who gave his name as Lawani said: “ The LASTMA official, who swept the conductor off his feet was the first person to alert his colleagues that their car had climbed the conductor’s head.
“There was no way we could save him as he died on the spot. A mob attacked the officials, but they were lucky to escape before the arrival of another batch of hoodlums.
“The hoodlums invaded LASTMA office around Cele and shattered windscreens of vehicles parked inside the premises.
“Owners of some of the seized vehicles used the opportunity to drive them away without paying the dues.
“My question is, why chase them all the way from Mile 2 to Cele, when there are other ways to apprehend a defaulter?”
The riot caused traffic gridlock. It took the intervention of a combined team of policemen from Itire and Ijesha divisions to contain the situation.