By: Kalu Emetu, Oluchi Nwanna & Abigail Elaigwu
There are 15,000 Drivers’ License uncollected and left in the vaults of the Directorate of Road Traffic Services (DRTS) in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Despite efforts of security personnel to make Nigerian roads safer, many motorists still find it difficult to drive with the legally required documents, especially the drivers’ license which is a prove that the holder passed through some trainings and is authorized to drive on Nigerian roads.
Accordingly, 15,000 licenses approved and produced within one year by the Directorate of Road Traffic Services are lying in the vaults of the Directorate as the owners abandon them without recourse to what happen on the road.
The Directorate noted that the major reason is that people relocate to other cities or towns and use the temporary one till when it expires before they go for its renewal in their new locations thereby, abandoning the ones they did in FCT.
The Directorate observed that ‘when calls are placed to inform them that their licenses are ready, their response is often that they have relocated and will come for it when they are in town’.
The Directorate said that about 70,000 approvals are given annually just as average of 150 to 200 applications receive approvals every day; noting that the Mabushi DRTS office happens to be one of the biggest capturing centers, nationwide.
On the attitude of Abuja motoring public, the organization said to a large extent, there was an improvement from what it used to be saying that the establishment of the FCT model driving school has really helped to change so many, not only vehicle drivers but also many other road users. The organization said that many have been forced to learn the road signs and can most times, keep to speed limits which has equally impacted on the rate of accidents in FCT.
The Directorate went further to explain that research had shown that most accidents in the nation’s capital were traced to over speeding, as the city has good roads unlike most states of the federation.
DRTS said searchlight was beamed on the commercial motorcyclists and tricycle riders that have constituted themselves to be the lords of the road.
They are being made to operate in the areas the FCT traffic regulation allows them to operate although it has remained a struggle.
While the tricycles are expected to operate within the estates to provide last mile services, the commercial motorcyclists are restricted to the satellite towns and other suburbs.
The Drivers’ testing and training unit of the Directorate and the FCT Model Driving Institute, have been training motorists and most other road users on the right road culture and traffic offenders are compulsorily referred to the Institute where they are drilled on the interpretation of road signs and signages. In the same way, the Drivers Testing and Training unit of the Directorate makes driving license holders to recite the signs most times before the renewal of lheir license.