From Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
Following the protest by tricycle operators in Onitsha on Saturday after a revenue collector stabbed one of its member, the United Commercial Keke-NAPEP and Motorcycle Riders Association of Nigeria (UCKERMORAN), Anambra State chapter yesterday reiterated their declaration of ‘war’ against unauthorized toll collection .
The association also declared war on touts , tricycle robbers and all other criminals who engage in unethical practices in the tricycle transport sector in the state.
UCKERMORAN in a joint statement issued in Onitsha,signed by its state chairman, Chief Arunsi Igbaniuka, Secretary, Raphael Agu,and Media/Publicity Secretary, Emperor Obaji, said its Keke riders welfare services has been repositioned to ensure that high cost of tricycle transport fares in the state would be reduced.
The group said the present hike in transport fares within the state was not caused by fuel price increase,but as a result of high taxes and extortionist fees imposed on the riders by numerous touts operating in the state.
To address the anomaly, the group said they were poised to ensure that only government authorized tickets that would henceforth operate in the state while all others engaged in unwholesome and illegal ticket sales would be flushed out completely,
While announcing its recognition to operate through the state Ministry of Transport, UCKERMORAN, solicited for the support of the masses in its quest for sanity in the system while advising all criminally minded groups engaging in illegal toll collections in the state to stop or quietly relocate.
“No pressure from any agbero group or association of such kind operating on Anambra roads who have been the chief mastermind of all the illegalities, extortions, touting and intimidation in the state before now will stop us from bringing and restoring peace, sanity and free atmosphere for keke riders in the state” the group said.
The group also commended Governor Willie Obiano for giving Anambra people a worthy successor in the person of Chukwuma Soludo and expressed the hope that Soludo would stamp the feet of his administration on ground by ensuring that revenue touts and thieves are cleared from the streets of Anambra.