Anambra Bans Transport Unions, Touts From Motor Parks
The Anambra State Government has announced the ban on tricycle and shuttle bus unions in the state. It also sacked touts from motor parks in the state.
It said only government-accredited agents are entitled to now collect tolls at the parks.
The directive was contained in a statement signed by the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Paul Nwosu, and made available to journalists in Awka, on Thursday.
This is following the seemingly unresolved disagreement between the state government and transport unions over the revenue collection system, a situation that made the transport operators embark on strike last week.
But Nwosu, in the statement, said security reports indicated that those masquerading under the names of such unions orchestrate breakdown of law and order in the state.
The state government asked all the motor park touts to proceed to register in their various localities for government-sponsored training and life-supporting skills.
The commissioner said the steps became necessary as conflicts arose from various persons claiming to be the appropriate authority to unionize tricycle and shuttle bus operators or owners who had openly rejected these claims and insisted that the unions were not working for them.
The statement read in part, “In the light of the above and in order to forestall breakdown of law and order, the state government hereby suspends all tricycle and shuttle bus unions in the state with immediate effect for six months, pending further investigations and possible harmonisation of the unions which shall have a leadership known to, and recognised by, the state government.
“Consequent on this and as a follow up to government’s recent consultation with the direct representatives of tricycle and shuttle bus operators, the government has considered their plea and decided to offer them a convenient payment option and other fringe benefits that could add value to their well-being.
“Tricycle operators now have the option of paying N4,000 weekly or N15,000 monthly. However, tricycle operators in the eight local government areas affected by curfew will pay N3,000 weekly or N12,000 monthly. They will revert to the normal rates of N4,000 weekly or N15,000 monthly as soon as the curfew is lifted.
“Shuttle bus operators will pay N5,000 weekly or N20,000 monthly. But because of the ASUU strike that resulted in the closure of universities, NANS shuttle bus will pay N2,500 weekly or N10,000 monthly. This group will also revert to the normal rates of N5,000 weekly or N20,000 monthly as soon as the strike is called off. Taxi will pay N4,375 weekly or N17,500 monthly. The Township buses will pay N5,000 weekly or N20,000 monthly. Mini truck and Pickup will pay N5,000 weekly or N20,000 monthly respectively. Intra-state will pay N6,250 weekly or N25,000 monthly.
“Loading and offloading in government (public) parks will now be free. Moving forward, every compliant commercial vehicle driver will get a free health insurance cover that would enable the insured to have access to basic health and emergency services in any Anambra State hospital.
“Government wishes to reiterate its ban on touts (agboro) and cult groups that are used to enforce illegal collection of tolls and taxes. Only government-accredited agents are entitled to collect tolls. Alternatively, the commercial vehicle operator could go and pay at any of the banks or any Anambra State Internal Revenue Service pay-point nearest to him.”
Ex-CGS Oladipo Diya Dies At 79
Lt. General Oladipo Diya, former Chief of General Staff under the late Head of State, General Sani Abacha, is dead.
His death was announced in a statement by his son, Prince Oyesinmilola Diya, on Sunday morning.
It read, “On behalf of the entire Diya family home and abroad; we announce the passing on to glory of our dear husband, father, grandfather, brother, Lt-General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya (rtd) GCON, LLB, BL, PSC, FSS, mni.
“Our dear Daddy passed onto glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023. Please keep us in your prayers as we mourn his demise in this period. Further announcements will be made public in due course.”
The former Chief of General Staff was born on April 3, 1944 at Odogbolu in Ogun State.
Diya joined the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna and fought during the Nigerian Civil War.
He was appointed Chief of General Staff in 1993 and Vice Chairman of the Provisional Ruling Council in 1994. As Chief of the General Staff, he was second in command and the de facto vice president of Nigeria under Abacha from 1994.
Breaking: Ekweremadu, Wife Found Guilty Of Organ Trafficking In The U.K.
A former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, his wife, Beatrice, have been found guilty of organ trafficking in the United Kingdom.
The duo alongside a medical doctor, Dr. Obinna Obeta, were found guilty of facilitating the travel of a young man to Britain with a view to his exploitation after a six-week trial at the Old Bailey.
They criminally conspired to bring the 21-year-old Lagos street trader to London to exploit him for his kidney, the jury found on Thursday.
The judge, Justice Jeremy Johnson, will pass a sentence at a later date, The Guardian UK reports.
Ekweremadu, Beatrice, their daughter, Sonia, and Obeta had been standing trial at the Old Bailey for organ trafficking.
Their conviction on Thursday was the first verdict of its kind under the Modern Slavery Act.
Ekweremadu and his wife were last year arrested in the United Kingdom for allegedly trafficking a young man into the country to harvest his kidney.
The young man was said to have been falsely presented as Sonia’s cousin in a failed bid to persuade doctors to carry out an £80,000 private procedure at the Royal Free Hospital in London.
The young man was said to have been offered an illegal reward to become a donor for Sonia after kidney disease forced her to drop out of a master’s degree in film at Newcastle University.
The prosecutor, Hugh Davies KC, told the court the Ekweremadus and Obeta had treated the man and other potential donors as “disposable assets – spare parts for reward”.
He said they entered an “emotionally cold commercial transaction” with the man, The Guardian UK report added.
The behaviour of Ekweremadu showed “entitlement, dishonesty and hypocrisy”, Davies told the jury.
He said Ekweremadu “agreed to reward someone for a kidney for his daughter – somebody in circumstances of poverty and from whom he distanced himself and made no inquiries, and with whom, for his own political protection, he wanted no direct contact”.
Davies added, “What he agreed to do was not simply expedient in the clinical interests of his daughter, Sonia, it was exploitation, it was criminal. It is no defence to say he acted out of love for his daughter. Her clinical needs cannot come at the expense of the exploitation of somebody in poverty.”
On March 14, it was reported that Beatrice denied involvement in the search for an organ donor for their ailing daughter, Sonia.
It was also reported that Ekweremadu claimed he involved the young man after he was advised by his doctor against seeking a kidney donor from among his family members.
Enugu Guber: INEC Suspends Nkanu East As Opposition Parties Cry Foul
The State Collation Officer for the governorship election in Enugu State, Prof. Maduebibisi Ofo Iwe, has suspended collation of results emanating from Nkanu East Council of the state, following allegation of non-usage of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) in the area during the election.
The Collation Officer for the council, Ogbene Nnaemeka, had presented the results of the area with the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Mbah, scoring 30,350 votes to beat his Labour Party (LP), counterpart, Chijioke Edeoga, who got 1,855 votes.
However, the LP agent, Dr. Eugene Edeoga, and that of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Ndubuisi Enechionye, as well as others, drew the attention of the Collation Officer and the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr. Chukwuemeka Chukwu.Edeoga said: “We have serious and fundamental objections to results being announced. Nkanu East did not use BVAS.
“INEC officers claimed the BVAS did not work, and we know what the Electoral Act provides regarding non-usage of BVAS. So, we are bringing this to your notice for your action.”
The APGA agent also said: “In the Community Primary School, Owo, Nkanu East, where the PDP candidate comes from, accredited voters were 200. PDP won all the 200 votes. But that 200 were not enough for them, they changed it to 800 when registered voters are 700.
All efforts by agents of the PDP to get the result to be accepted, was unsuccessful as the Collation Officer, Prof. Iwe, suspended the result from the area. So far at press time, results from 12 councils out of 17 have been collated.