Abstract
The effectiveness of road transportation relies heavily on several factors and the attitude of the road driver to traffic engineering, control and management requirement. It is in the light of the above consideration and context that this study; Road Transport policy and Traffic management in Nigeria, Directorate of Road Traffic Service (DRTS) Federal Capital Territory Abuja in Perspective can conveniently be situated. The study brings into focus for better appreciation, the important roles of the traffic officers in driving test licenses, road worthiness test, enlightenment campaign activities, highway patrol, revenue generation etc which are all important elements in actualizing the policy thrust of the country’s transport policy of adequacy and safety using both primary and secondary sources of data collection with simple percentage method of analysis and system theory as theoretical underpinning. Conclusion and far reaching recommendations were drawn in the light of the findings with the hope that such will shape the transportation policy process of government.

Keywords: Policy; transport; management; traffic

Introduction
Transportation had always played a vital role in the development of any nation. This is borne out of the fact that the primary function of transportation is to move passenger or goods from a place of lesser value to a place of higher value or utility. Transportation contributes two types of utility namely: place and time utility, which in economic terms simply means moving goods and people where they are wanted, and when they are wanted. Dickey (1995) opined that Transportation is essentially a service or facility that links source of raw material, the manufacturing and processing centers and the markets to achieve economic growth and development. It is an industry created to serve the basic needs of the society.

The effectiveness of road transportation relies heavily on the type and condition of vehicle under use, the road condition, the driver’s competence, the attitude of the driver to traffic engineering, control, management as well as the policy guidelines that give directions to the entire transport system.

The social, economic and political environment of a country is dynamic

Journal Of Research In National Development Volume 6 No.1 ISSN 1596 – 8308 June, 2008

responding to national and international stimuli. Transport plays a pivotal role in this; therefore, a country’s transport system must be sensitive to such a dynamic environment if it is to play its deserved role in the various sectors of the economy. Over the past seven years, Nigeria has embarked on a reform process. Transport as a major element and factor in the Country’s growth process is not left out. The National Transport policy document is responsive to the needs of the country and its people. The fundamental goals have been to develop an adequate, affordable, safe, environmentally sound and efficient transport system in the context of a progressive and competitive market economy.

To achieve the objectives of this policy a certain institutional framework which includes the Federal Ministry of Transport with its arrays of departments and parastatals with similar set up at the state levels and Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Federal Road Safety Commission, the Police, the Directorate of Road Traffic Service (DRTS) and its states equivalent just to mention a few were established and strengthened. The study shall examine the Nigeria’s transport policy documents and the traffic management measure that are applicable in the FCT against the background of how the traffic officer in the FCT has helped to actualize it. To this end attention was drawn to the primary duties of the FCT DRTS as enshrined in its enabling law.

Attentions on transport policy and traffic management were tailored to existing practices and powers binding the DRTS. The FCT is chosen because the way the transport policy and traffic management is implemented here seems to typify the practices elsewhere in the country. Another reason for selecting the FCT is due to its been the Federal Capital Territory, its transport activities impact on the entire country.
The delicate imbalance between the Nigerian transport policy document specifications and the present condition of our traffic management vis-à-vis the role the road traffic officer is expected to play give rise to the following research questions:

To what extent have the policy inconsistencies of the Federal Government responsible for the present unwieldy transport system in Nigeria at large and the Federal Capital Territory in particular?

Has the observed duplication of institutional framework for enforcing the traffic management measures and administering the policy a negative impact on road transport administration in the FCT?

Why have the goals, missions and objectives of the policy instrument not translated into a realizable form within the context of the present numerous institutional arrangements?

Why are the objectives of the transport policy poorly met and why has it been so?
What are the factors hindering the service effectiveness and operational efficiency of the road traffic officer despite the lofty responsibilities the enabling law confers on them in the FCT? And

Has the road traffic officer been able to make any meaningful impact on Road… (Read more)

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