The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Rep. Akinfolarin Mayowa (APC-Ondo), has declared that the decision to allow FRSC officials to bear arms does not lie with the Committee.
Mayowa made the clarification on Monday, November 9; while reacting to some media reports which quoted the Committee as having approved the FRSC officials to bear arms.
Addressing the media in Abuja, Mayowa said that during the 2021 budget defence; the FRSC Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi raised concerns over the harassment; kidnapping; and killing of officials on the line of duty.
He said the Committee resolved to liaise with the leadership of the Parliament and members of the Executive to ensure the protection of FRSC officials.
He explained that officials of FRSC are entitled to the right to life; and also have dependents.
The legislator also said that the 2007 FRSC Establishment Act, allows officials to bear arms; saying that the position can only change through an Act of Parliament.
He said that the committee cannot decide if officials of FRSC should bear arms or not; explaining that it lies with the decision of the Parliament.
“As a matter of fact, we said we are going to set up a committee; to look at ways to protect lives and property on our roads.
“We are saying that motorists, FRSC personnel; as well as other road users deserve security and protection on our roads.
“The only time we made reference to firearms was when we talked about the FRSC Establishment Act of 2007; which empowers officials to use arms.
“We cannot do that without looking at ways to do so in a manner that won’t be injurious to the public.
“That is what informed the issue of setting up a committee to look into that aspect in the first place,” he said.
He explained that the procedure in the parliament requires that existing law should undergo amendment process if it must be altered.
According to him, this is not what can be done at a committee level; it has to be at the plenary where all Nigerians are represented.