The chairman of the Federal Committee on Road Safety of the House of Representatives (FRSC), Representative Akinfolarin Mayowa (APC-Ondo), says that the decision to allow FRSC officials to carry weapons does not belong to the committee.
Mayowa made the clarification Monday while reacting to media reports citing that the committee had approved FRSC officials to carry weapons.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, Mayowa, he said that during the defense of the 2021 budget, FRSC Corps Marshal Dr. Boboye Oyeyemi raised concerns about the harassment, kidnapping and murder of officials in the line of duty.
He said the committee resolved to contact the leadership of parliament and members of the Executive to ensure the protection of FRSC officials.
He explained that FRSC officials have the right to life and also have dependents.
The lawmaker also said that the FRSC Establishment Act of 2007 allows officials to carry weapons, saying the position can only change through an Act of Parliament.
He said the committee cannot decide whether FRSC officials should carry arms or not, explaining that it depends on the decision of parliament.
“In fact, we said that we are going to establish a committee to find ways to protect lives and property on our roads.
“We are saying that motorists, FRSC personnel and other road users deserve safety and security on our roads.
“The only time we made reference to firearms was when we discussed the FRSC Establishment Act of 2007, which empowers officials to use weapons.
We cannot do that without looking for ways to do it in a way that is not harmful to the public.
“That is what informed the issue of creating a committee to examine that aspect in the first place,” he said.
He explained that procedure in parliament requires that an existing law go through an amendment process if it must be modified.
According to him, this is not what can be done at the committee level; it has to be in plenary where all Nigerians are represented.