10 Ways to avoid Naija Police from holding you up at a Checkpoint

If you’ve ever driven about Lagos (Nigeria) a lot, chances are you’ve come across our ‘ambitious’ law enforcement officers in black who mount road blocks in different places on our highways and spend time doing what they call ‘stop and search’ routine – even when it was banned some time ago by their ‘Oga’.

There’s actually nothing wrong in stopping and searching motorists. But it would make more sense if this routine was because of some security threat or so.

Well, most times there are no security reasons for mounting a road block. As a matter of fact most police checkpoints are no different from illegally located kiosks hustling to make some cash.

And when you happen to be a motorist with all your documents complete, they look for a way to still peg an offence on you. The whole aim is to get you to bribe your way out of the unnecessary predicament. And even if they don’t succeed in pegging you down, they sure know how to waste your precious time over senseless issues.

So how can you stop police from stopping you at any checkpoint? Here are some tried tips that may work!

1. When approaching a checkpoint and you happen to have your girlfriend or spouse next to you, the two of you should deliberately start an argument and make sure its heated such that you’re yelling at each other. When the cops see you, they don’t bother stopping you. They don’t like being in the middle of domestic issues.

2. If you can afford to carry a kid or kids along on your trip, do so. They work like magic. Each time I carry little Timi and A.Y along, they dare not stop me. Children seem to charm them or maybe make them feel too guilty to stop a Parent and harass a bribe out of him or her.

3. This one works for you if you’re a Christian. Pop in a powerful message tape or CD by a powerful Pastor and get spiritual. If you get waved to stop, smile at the officer and say something like; ‘Good day my brother. How is work? You are blessed in Jesus name!’ and then offer him a tract of flier. You ask why? It’s because they see ‘men of God’ as ‘bad market’ because they will never give bribe since it is forbidden by God.

4. This one is similar to No. 2. When you’re with a heavily pregnant woman, they don’t waste time with you. Did I mention something earlier about staying away from personal domestic issues? This one sort of amplifies it, especially when you’re checking on the pregnant lady now and again to be sure that she’s okay. You might cut the picture that you’re hurrying someone in labour to the hospital.

5. If you have car that’s black or dark blue in color, stick a small flag on your dashboard or antenna or any other conspicuous place and wear a stern face when you drive. They’re usually apprehensive about stopping cars that might turn out to be a top ranking Police or military officer or a highly placed government official.

6. If you have a driver, always make sure you sit at the ‘owner’s corner’. This either creates the same effect as No. 5 or just creates the assumption that anyone who has a driver would probably make sure vehicle papers are updated because the driver would have complained about it.

7. If you have access to new model vehicle, drive it more often. Police love to target ‘tokuboh cars’ (imported used cars) since most of them are usually smuggled and would lack one paper or the other. Oh...and did you know that the Police have a way of knowing when you've just bought a 'tokunboh'? Yes...the secret lies in the numbers on your number plate.A brand new vehicle is just ‘bad market’ as it would come with everything needed to be documented. And then if you’re driving a new model that’s actually a ‘tokunboh’ then you're one lucky son of a gun!

8. Have some nicely grilled suya or something edible in the car and the moment the Police stops you, start eating it, greet him politely and offer him some. Don’t forget to say something like, ‘Well done oh officer! Please join me oh. I can’t finish this suya.’ He might laugh and have some or just wave you to go after just peeping your boot.

9. Just as you are about approaching a checkpoint, stop your car a few metres away, come down and walk towards the checkpoint to make inquiries from the officer about a road or area that you are trying to locate. After the officer(s) has finished giving you directions thank him or them wholeheartedly, get back into your car and drive off. They wouldn’t think of stopping you after you’ve appreciated them and made them so significant.

10. Once stopped at a checkpoint, smile politely at the officer and say, ‘Good day officer. Would you like to see my papers or should I drop something for the boys?’ Hey, it’s not a bribe, just you offering to drop a tip so they can leave you on time. Besides, it’s an offer that a hungry policeman can’t refuse.

I’ll still advise that you have all your papers complete should in case any of these tips fail. I’m not advocating for breaking the law oh. And I’m not guaranteeing that all of them will work all the time. See them just as strategies to get through time-wasting checkpoints.

Have any other strategies you use to keep the cops at bay at checkpoints? Let’s hear ‘em in your comments!

Images courtesy:
Kayode Ogundamisi
Associated Press

17 Screamer(s):

LASTMA Drives Bus Driver Nuts (NSFW!)

If you've ever lived in Lagos and driven round the city,
chances are you've encountered road forces such as
the Nigerian Police, LASTMA, FRSC, VIOs amongst others.

Falling into the hands of these people can be hell, especially when
they ask you for unecessary and irrelevant documents all with the 
aim of making you part with some cash. To the corrupt ones, 
every offender guilty or not is an opportunity. 

 I'm not saying Naija motorists don't break laws, infact we are notorious
for breaking them, especially those crazy drivers of yellow commuter buses.
But even when we wise up and decide to be law-abiding,
these road forces will always be there to drive you nuts!

Bus drivers have suffered a lot in their hands. This bus driver lost it
when he encountered LASTMA after loosing cash to FRSC officials
who stopped him earlier. I don't know if he broke the rules
but after going nuts over being pulled over and displaying raw vexation 
by shedding his clothes in rage and planting his big butt before his bus,
you can't help but pity the poor guy.

WARNING!: Graphic Video

This is definitely a proven fact that LASTMA can drive you NUTS!

Welcome to Lagos - the home of traffic madness!

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Water Pass Garri for Police Officer

I've got this video on my phone and it just never fails to crack me up whenever I watch it again and again.
If you're feeling down, this just might be something to split your sides. Can't figure out which movie it's from.

Honestly...this Nkem guy dey craze!

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