Home NEWS Commuters Stranded as Protesting Anambra Drivers Block Highway

Commuters Stranded as Protesting Anambra Drivers Block Highway

by InlandTown Editor
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There was pandemonium in Onitsha, Anambra State, on Tuesday, when commercial drivers clashed with illegal revenue collectors in the state.

The bus drivers, in a bid to register their grievances, blocked the ever-busy Onitsha end of the River Niger Bridge, thereby preventing vehicular movements on the road.
The protesters claimed that blocking the highway was the only way to express their dissatisfaction with the extortion by louts and illegal revenue agents.

The situation made stranded commuters to trek long distances to their various destinations, while other vehicle owners made use of inner roads. People started running helter-skelter when the protesters resorted to violence and confronted the revenue agents.

The intervention of security operatives prevented the situation from escalating.

The spokesperson for the group, Ugwoke Onyemaechi, said the drivers embarked on the protest to draw the attention of the state Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, to their plight.

He said, “How can these louts continue to extort money from us after we pay the agreed levy to the state government? At any bus-stop we pull up, they will rush down and say we are not supposed to park there and forcefully collect thousands of naira from us.

“Some of us who refuse to pay will be beaten black and blue for daring them, and that is why we protest for the government to provide motor parks for us since we can’t pull up to pick or drop passengers at the bus-stops. We will continue the protest if nothing is done.”

The protest, which lasted for about two hours, resulted in gridlock as occupants of some vehicles, who could not withstand the situation, came out from their vehicles and started trekking.

The state police spokesman, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga, said security operatives deployed in the area had restored order.

He said, “We don’t know the reason they were protesting but our men were quickly deployed in the area to restore normalcy and prevent breakdown of law and order and patrol is still ongoing; people should go about their normal activities.”

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