As the country prepares to allow interstate travels from Wednesday, July 1, 2020, the police in Lagos State said on Monday that they arrested 179 persons for violating interstates non-essential travels in two days during the movement restriction period.
The government ordered the movement ban on March 29, 2020 in an effort to check the spread of COVID-19.
The Police Public Relations Officer in Lagos State, DSP Bala Elkana, confirmed the arrest to newsmen on Monday, stressing that the violators were arrested on June 28 and June 29 at various interstate checkpoints and motor-parks in the state.
Elkana said among those arrested were 43 commercial bus drivers conveying the arrested passengers to Abuja, Kogi, Abia, among others.
He said that the vehicles were impounded and the suspects arraigned in Lagos State Special Offences (Mobile) Court and sentenced accordingly.
“The Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, CP Hakeem Odumosu, warned commercial vehicle operators and motor parks against violating interstate movement restriction orders.
“Passengers are also warned against non- essential interstate travel,” Elkana said.
HumAngle reports that in spite of the ban on interstate movements during the COVID-19 lockdown, people engaged in such travels, sometimes with the connivance of security agencies.
HumAngle learnt that apart from the increased cost of the travels, travellers took serious risks, including the possibility of being kidnapped or robbed during the travels.
Last week, seven travellers from Abuja to Lagos were kidnapped in Ondo State.
Security personnel deployed to enforce the restrictions were also accused of using the opportunity to extort motorists to enable them to move across state boundaries.