Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
Abia indigenes, resident in Anambra State, affected by the recent ban on commercial motorcyclists in Onitsha, have cried out to Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State, for assistance so they could find alternative means of livelihood.
Chairman of Abia Indigenes Forum, Anambra State, Chief Arunsi Uka in a press conference yesterday said the bulk of their members who are into Okada business had been thrown into the unemployment market since July 1 while others now engage in menial jobs to survive.
Chief Ukah noted that the deadline given by the Anamabra State Government for the implementation of the directive was too short for the Okada riders to switch over into other businesses while the non indigenes have been excluded in the government planned palliatives.
According to Chief Uka, “Anambra State Government announced that they have imported shuttle buses to empower Anambra indigenes affected by the okada ban at a subsidized rate.
“On the other hand, the non indigenes were left out as their fate hangs as the government failed to consider that non indigenes in the state do pay their tax and other levies that the state government uses to generate revenue for the development of the state.
“As a result of this development, other states like Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo States have taken a cue from Anambra State to empower their indigenes so affected by the ban. We Abians in Anambra have our own state and we have no other alternative than to appeal to our able governor for assistance.”
The Forum also called on Governor Ikpeazu to consider their appeal as a matter of urgent attention so as to save many of their people resident in Anambra State from immediate danger of hunger and deprivation which may lead to other serious complications like crime and life threatening issues.