The President of Good Leadership Advocacy For Africa (GLAFA) and Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress in Delta State,Dr. O’Diakpo Obire has told Gov Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State,to rein in the transport directorate taskforce,from harassing and beating up innocent and poor passengers in the state.
Dr. Obire who was a Governorship candidate for Delta State under the platform of Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) in the 2019 general election, said the social media has been awash with the news of the harassment, haranguing and even physically beating up of innocent and poor passengers and commercial drivers by the taskforce.
The statement read:
“The social and print media has been awash with the news of the harassment, haranguing and even physically beating up of innocent and poor passengers and commercial drivers by Governor Okowa’s Transport Directorate Taskforce over the failure of intra or interstate passengers to pay N100 Welfare Scheme, a policy of the Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration. The vehicles in which the passengers were traveling were also impounded and were only released after paying hefty sums of money.
The action of the so-called taskforce is reprehensible and unacceptable, and a shame on the Government of the State. It is archaic, wrong and unacceptable for government staff to behave like thugs and thieves to forcefully stop vehicles on the high way to demand compliance with the policy. This is the 21st century and better methods of compliance with government policies must be employed. Such archaic methods belong in the past.
A Passenger Welfare Scheme that takes care of injuries or deaths from road traffic accidents is not a bad policy in itself, but its administration and enforcement should not be through brigandage and thuggery that has become the trademark of the Transport Directorate. The government must, through advocacy, inform the citizenry of the benefits of the program. The people will willingly key into the policy if they are informed of the benefits.
Additionally, the government must deploy its staff to the motor parks to ensure the policy is complied with and collect the manifest of passengers. Enforcing the policy by stopping vehicles on the highway in thug-like manner is unacceptable and paints the government in poor light.
Finally, the Taskforce of the Directorate of Transport has been in the news for wrong reasons. In January of this year, a horde of members of the Taskforce were sacked for extortion. It will pay the State Governor better to have the Taskforce disbanded rather than cause him and his government unnecessary embarrassment every now and then.”Obire said.
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