Ekpe Okpo-Ekpeyong, a taxi driver, who suddenly stripped himself to his birthday suit when flagged down by officials of the Federal Road Safety Corps in Cross Rivers, recently, said the news of his father's death spurred his action. Okpo-Ekpeyong was stopped by the officers for using the telephone behind the wheels. While the officers tried to remove the keys from the car ignition and have the car towed away, Okpo-Ekpeyong, moved to the middle of the road and stripped. He was eventually arrested and taken in for a Psychiatry test, which proved he was mentally sane. Narrating the circumstances of the event, Okpo-Ekpeyoung said: “I received a call while driving along Marian Road on that day; the message was that my father had just died. Just after receiving that call, I saw officials of the FRSC on the road, I lost focus; I became confused because I was not using the seat belt. The moment I saw them, my confusion increased", he stated.
“The situation was further compounded when the steering got locked while the FRSC official was trying to remove the key from the ignition; I knew the implication of that development because I had just returned from the mechanic workshop as a result of that problem.
“When I saw the whole scenario, I was confused and started pleading for leniency, but before I knew what was happening, arrangement had been made for a towing van to convey my vehicle to the FRSC office.
“At that point, I started removing my clothes without knowing what I was doing. I removed my cloths and stood on the middle of the road, hoping that a car could crush me. I just could not comprehend what was happening to me.”
Okpo-Ekpeyong lamented that before the encounter with FRSC officials, he had not been able to remit any money to the owner of the cab due to his father’s ailment.
“Even, I did not have money for my licence. It was the owner of the car that gave me money to renew it. In that confused state, I suddenly had the zeal to do anything to avoid the FRSC from impounding the vehicle because I could not face the owner of the car to tell him that the vehicle had been impounded.
“I just could not face him because I had not made a delivery to him for over a month." The FRSC officials claimed Okpo-Ekpeyong carried an invalid driving license and irregular vehicle papers at the time of his arrest. The command however took pity and did not prosecute the road offender. Instead, Okpo-Ekpeyong was instructed to get a valid license and regularise his vehicle particulars.
Source: Saturday PUNCH