Chairman of Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), Comrade Emmaunel Udoh, has said that crisis among Keke riders in the State is being caused by elements who are bent on creating anarchy, chaos and lawlessness in the State.
Comrade Udoh made this known while speaking with journalists in his office in Uyo, noting that only two unions, namely Road Transport Owners Association of Nigeria (RTOAN) and National Association of Road Transport Workers (NARTW) were recognized by the constitution.
He accused one Sunny Enang of setting up an illegal body known as Tricycle Owners Association of Nigeria (TOAN) to discourage keke riders from paying levies to Government and to disrupt the ongoing biometric exercise.
In his words: “We woke up one day to discover an association called TOAN, formed by a certain Sunny Enang, which is not recognized in the state and doesn’t have an enabling Act backing it by law. We had since taken him to court and we are rather surprised that while the proceedings are still on, he chose to disrupt the peace in the State with unlawful protest. For him to tell government not to collect revenue, inciting riders not to pay approved levies, saying that he alone has the right to collect what he calls check off dues; smacks of mischief, lawlessness and disregard for constituted authority. He has gone further to tell his supporters not to register in on going biometric exercise, not to register their tricycles or renew their particulars. It seems as if he is sponsored to attack Government.”
“And it is mischievous because this same Sunny Enang had once written to Governor Akpabio to congratulate him for encouraging levies on tricycle,” he stressed.
Comrade Udoh further hinted that the biometric exercise was designed to stop criminals from using tricycles for nefarious activities like armed robbery and rape.
He lambasted Sunny Enang and TOAN for opposing such positive moves; stopping government from generating revenue and encouraging the rise of criminal activities through fake TOAN registration numbers.
Comrade Udoh explained that the Commissioner for Transport, Prince Godwin Ntukudeh, had called a stakeholders meeting over the crisis, which was attended by security agencies, and gave the Governor’s directive for keke riders with fake registration numbers to be the arrested.
He charged all tricycle owners and riders to be law abiding and to work as a team for meaningful development to take place in the State.
Comrade Udoh also used the opportunity to announce free renewal of biometric M.O.T papers (road worthiness and commercial permit) for 1000 members, which is aimed at boosting renewal generation for the State Government.
He pledged his unalloyed loyalty to the Governor Udom Emmanuel administration, noting that in February 2014, the road transport employer was the first union the urge the Governor to resign as Secretary to Government to contest the gubernatorial elections.
It would be recalled that on February 26th 2015, Comrade George Udoh had led other Stakeholders in the transport sector to roll out drums at Ibom Hall in solidarity with the Udom Emmanuel candidacy for the 2015 general elections.