Diary of a Lagos Commuter: Why Police Enjoy Free Rides
In Lagos, some drivers are often too eager to give Uniformed men (Policemen, Army officials, Naval officers etc) a lift, especially through routes where there are always Policemen-cum-traffic-warden and hoodlums-cum-tax-collectors (agebros), who in my opinion siphon drivers’ hard-earned money in the name of charging NURTW fees.
The way and manner in which the conductor guarded the front seat for this particular Policeman in the picture below reminded me of an encounter some days ago.
As is custom, our driver was quite eager to give an Army official a lift from Maryland, Lagos. From one bus stop to another, the agberos kept coming at the conductor like a swarm of bees. The conductor and driver having been empowered by the presence of the uniformed man acted like the agberos were irrelevant. Trust me, this is not usually the case.
A few minutes into the journey, the puzzled Army official had to ask how many of them (agberos) are collecting money per stop.
It was obvious this particular official is a JJC [new] in Lagos. In fact, his uniform was that of the one usually worn by security forces fighting against Boko Haram.
The ‘naive’ officer may not be aware that the presence of hoodlums in Lagos is one of the most important reasons why he gets a free ride in Lagos.