Lagos Suspends NURTW Activities In Oshodi Over Violence
The Lagos State Government has suspended the National Union of Road Transport Workers in Oshodi, following the recent violence in the area.
The state government said the suspension was in reaction to the violence during which a leader of the Motorcycle Operators’ Association of Lagos State (MOALS) in Oshodi, Rasaq Bello, who was popularly known as Hamburger, was killed.
All the seven NURTW branches in the area were affected.
The state’s Acting Commissioner for Transportation, Prince Olanrewaju Elegushi, disclosed this during a press briefing by officials of the State, the police and NURTW inside the state Secretariat in Alausa.
According to him, throughout the duration of the suspension order, a team of state government officials and security personnel will be mandated to oversee and monitor the transport operations within the affected branches to ensure that the unions do not collect ticket or fees from commuter buses operating in the area.
He said, “For the avoidance of doubt, police investigations are ongoing on the said death and all persons found culpable will be prosecuted in line with the dictates of the laws.
“It is important to also emphasise that all rumour mongering, insinuations and unfounded/unverified facts should be avoided in the sake of peaceful co-existence.
“Any escalation of the crisis arising from the ban will lead to Government taking sterner actions against the branches where violence is recorded.”
The commissioner added that the state government had taken steps to check conflicts between transport unions in the state.
For instance, he said the state government has already put in place the Bus Reform Initiative (BRI) through which 5,000 air-conditioned and convenient buses would be injected into the transport sector, adding that the initiative would soon be launched.
Also, Deputy Commissioner of Police in Charge of Operations in the State, Mr Imohimi Edgal, said some arrests have been made following the crisis and that investigation had started in respect of the violence.
The Chairman of NURTW in Lagos State, Tajudeen Agbede, said the union was consulted by the government before it took the decision.
“I like to confirm that the decision of the State Government to suspend union activities in Oshodi was supported by us. We also want a lasting peace in Oshodi and we know that with this decision, people can go about their duties without let or hindrance,” Agbede said.
“I am sure if the union had handled the issue of Oshodi, we would have arrived at the same decision to suspend activities for now and I want to urge our members to cooperate with the government in its bid to ensure lasting peace.”
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