Posted by Boniface Okoro, Umuahia | 28 April 2016 | 2,852 times
The Abia State Ministry of Transport has outlined measures to sanitise the transport industry in the state, particularly the operations of commercial motorists.
The Commissioner for Transport, Barrister (Mrs) Nnenna Obewu-Onwuka, who disclosed this in Aba, listed the measures to include eradication of touting at motor parks, prohibition of the sale of alcoholic beverages at motor parks and testing of drivers for drunkenness while on duty and registration of bus conductors, among others.
During her tour of Osisioma Modern Motor Park and other motor parks in Aba metropolis Wednesday, Mrs Obewu-Onwuka also promised that motor parks across the state would be reorganised for decent operations.
News Expres recalls that the Abia State Executive Council had earlier this year outlawed touting in the state and directed security operatives to flush out touts in Abia.
Addressing motor unions at the Osisioma Park, the Commissioner said that touting was a curse which no decent person would want to be associated with. She, therefore, urged those operating as touts in all motor parks in Abia to desist from such acts or leave the parks.
The commissioner said: “Touting is a curse. There is nobody whose mother gave birth to and called him a tout. We must eradicate the practice of touting in Abia State. We do not want people going naked in the parks.
“We shall no longer encourage the sale of alcoholic beverages inside our motor parks because when a driver drinks and drives, he could wipe out lives of innocent travelers.
“We are going to start testing drivers and if we find you drunk and on the steering, you will be punished accordingly. If you like to drink, you can do so after work in your house.”
Barrister Obewu-Onwuka warned the operators to heed the ministry’s instructions and obey traffic laws to avoid being punished, adding that the Dr Okezie Ikpeazu-led administration would not condone defaulters who offer bribes to officials of her ministry to enable them to continue in their illegalities.
Chairman of the Technical Committee on Transport, Mr. St. Moses Ogbonna, in his speech, said that the committee would ensure that the four transport unions were allocated separate offices to enhance their operations.
Ogbonna said that as soon as his committee begins operation, commercial transporters would be barred from parking at areas not designated as parks, either to pick or discharge passengers of cargoes.
He hinted that conductors working with bus drivers would be registered as a measure to eradicate deft of passengers’ luggage by unscrupulous conductors.
The Chairman, Joint Motor Unions of Osisioma Ngwa, Chief Mike Achilefu, thanked the Commissioner for her visit to the park, pointing out that she was the first transport commissioner in Abia to visit them since the park was built in 2010.
He appealed to the commissioner to effectively check the activities of transporters who do not use motor parks in Aba but prefer indiscriminate picking of passengers along the roads as they were driving those using the parks out of business.
He also requested the ministry to upgrade the Osisioma Park by providing facilities that were lacking so that the park would generate more revenue for the state.
•Photo shows Governor Ikpeazu.
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