The National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), in Abia state, has
accused the state Commissioner of Transport of collecting money to
create loading units for transport operators in Aba and Umuahia.
State chairman of NURTW, Chief Eugene Eze Job, who stated this in an
interview with journalists while reacting to attacks over the ownership
of loading units among okada operators in Aba, blamed the situation on
the Ministry of Transport.
Okada operators at Zion by East Street and Obohia Nkwo Ngwa units in Aba
South had last week fought over the ownership of the units, with most of
them sustaining injuries.
Eze Job alleged that the Commissioner engaged non-okada operators and
imposed illegal levies as each member of the units pay a daily fee of
N600 for registration and N500 for road rehabilitation.
He further accused the Commissioner of collecting N200,000 and N300,000
to allocate loading pits to operators.
He said; “How can okada operators be charged N600 daily and another N500
which they said is for road rehabilitation? The Commissioner for
Transport collects money to create loading units everywhere. Those who
refuse to pay the illegal tolls are assaulted by thugs. This is why the
okada riders are fighting daily. He also imposed non-okada operators and
thugs to lead the okada riders. Nwaohanmuo collects between N200, 000 to
N300, 000, to allocate loading pits to people.”
“I have over 30 petitions from the okada operators against the
Commissioner for Transport on how he collects money to create loading
pits for anyone that can afford it. NURTW has taken up the issue with
him, yet he isn’t listening to us,” Eze Job said.
However, Commissioner for Transport, Chief Ekele Nwaohanmuo, who denied
the allegations, stated that the NURTW chairman has refused to obey
regulations guiding the transport industry in the state.
According to him; “I have never created loading pits for anybody. It is
laughable to say that I collect N300, 000 to create loading pits. The
state NURTW chairman, Eugene Eze Job doesn’t want other unions to
operate. He is the one causing the problems. He is the chairman of
NURTW; he is the chairman of SATOA; now they have floated another one,
Motor Transport Union of Nigeria. They applied to the Ministry of
Transport but I refused to approve it, and he asked them to come and
register in the NURTW.