By Sodiq Lawal
Commercial bus drivers in Ile Ife have lamented the continuous harassment and extortion they pass through by the officers of Nigeria Police Force.
The commercial bus drivers who transport people from Ile Ife to Osogbo lamented the increase in number of check points they have to deal with, as well as the incessant hardship and financial extortion they are often faced with on a daily basis.
Our correspondent who was an eye witness, noted that most of the commercial bus drivers have taken advantage of the political season in the state by pasting politicial posters who are contesting the governorship seat in the front of their buses so as to prevent themselves from police extortion.
Our correspondent discovered how a commercial bus driver who was plying the road with passengers from Ife to Oshogbo pasted Senator Iyiola Omisore’s poster in front of his bus to curb police extortion and when he reached each police check, he was allowed to go without giving the police any bribe.
Narrating his ordeal, a commercial bus driver who identified himself as Adenekan Akeem, said: “Every day I go out for my daily bread, I always feel insecure because of policemen. I do spend N50 in every police check up from Ife to Osogbo for paying money that I should not pay.
“If we fail to pay such amount of money sometimes, amount to different sort of persecution and harassment.
“I keep wondering, policemen that are meant to keep the road safe have now become more dangerous than we can imagine.”
Another commercial driver who craved anonymity told our correspondent that he suffers loss on a daily basis due to police extortion.
“I usually spend money running into settling policemen and other security personnel.
“Unfortunately, because we don’t want to be delayed, we prefer to give the money than to be subjected to unnecessary delays and harassments,” he said.