Tipper drivers’ protest grounds Onitsha

Posted by News Express | 15 December 2020 | 589 times

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•Protesting Onitsha tipper drivers


Tipper drivers’ protest in Onitsha, Anambra State, on Friday grounded socioeconomic activities in the commercial city.

Vehicular movements were halted from 7am to 12 noon as the protesters blocked the Onitsha-Enugu Expressway.

Entry and exit from the state were made impossible by the tipper drivers as they blocked both sides of the road with a number of tipper trucks while singing anti-government songs.

They alleged intimidation and extortion by government revenue agencies.

The Friday protest by the group was the third in the series.

Some of their placards read, “Governor Obiano your appointees are destroying your good work,” Prof. Theresa, Mr Nzekwu, Mr. Uchenna Okafor, “Wiper” have no business in your government, they are destroying your government” “We love Obiano but his Commissioners are destroying his government because of selfish interests and the interests of their friends and family members”.

The president-general of Tipper Drivers Association, Anambra State chapter, Ebuka Unekwe, explained that his members were being made to pay N1000 per trip of sand they lifted and additional N1400 and N700 illegal levies.

He said, “You will recall that we blocked this road in the middle of this year shortly after the removal of the former Commissioner for Transport, Mr. Uchenna Okafor, “Wiper” who introduced all those illegal levies.

“We were invited to Awka to meet with the governor but in the end, the person we saw was the Commissioner of Police who met with us and wherein some of our members were detained in police cells and all effort to see the governor was blocked by the same people who are benefiting from our woes.

“We blocked this road today (Friday) with pain as last resort to draw the attention of the governor to the extortions his appointees have been engaged in.”

He added, “We are constrained to do this because we can see the suffering of our brothers and sisters who are returning home for the season.

“We have got a Federal High Court judgement against these illegal revenue agents, but they do not want to obey the court ruling because of the money they are making from us.”

However, It took the intervention of Senator Ifeanyi Ubah, representing Anambra South Senatorial District for the protesters to retreat.

Ubah, it was gathered, was trapped in the gridlock for hours while coming from the Asaba Airport in Delta State.

Ubah said, “I am pained that the incident is happening when people are coming home for the Christmas and new year celebrations.

“I will fix a meeting with the tipper drivers to know the problems and how to get across to governor Obiano to take action against the perpetrators of the illegalities that had led to this.” (The PUNCH)

Source: News Express

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