Raymond Ozoji, Awka
The Anambra state commissioner for transport Dr. Christian Madubuko has said that one of his major concerns is to rid motorparks and bus terminals in the state of touts and miscreants constituting nuisance to commuters and motorists.
The commissioner stated that rather than apply brutal force in combating the menace of touts, he said government would instead deploy strategic measures to convert them into instruments of state promotion.
He stated this during an exclusive interview with our correspondent in his office at the state secretariat complex Awka.
Madubuko who had served as the state commissioner for trade and commerce and was appointed by Governor Willie Obiano barely a fortnight ago as the new commissioner for transport, noted that the transport industry was a wider sector but expressed his resolve to sanitise as well as regulate transport business in Anambra in line with state policies and procedures.
The commissioner said that the issue of touting was because those involved had not been properly dealt with which he observed as the remote reason why they still exist in the parks causing problems.
He was however of the opinion that government would device a veritable means of deploying their youthful energies to more legitimate profitable ventures adding that the ministry of youth empowerment and creative economy would come in handy to really engage them meaningfully to curb touting and social defiance in the state.
Madubuko also revealed government’s intention to enforce compliance on the use of public motorparks by commercial buses to curb the menace of commercial vehicles loading and unloading along the roads and other pedestrian areas to avoid accidents.
He said government would not fold it arms and watch people flout the law stressing that he would commence immediate action on decongestion of Oko road in Orumba-North local government area where reports have it that commercial buses have abandoned the public motorpark and took over Oko road where the federal polytechnic is situated. He said he would equally extend the same exercise to other parks across Anambra state.
According to him, government would ensure that motorists used parks to promote good governance as well as generate revenue for the state. He explained that the ultimate goal was to instill in motorists the right attitude to transportation business.
Meanwhile, the lawmaker representing Orumba-North state constituency in the Anambra State House of Assembly Hon. Emeka Aforka had moved a motion calling on Governor Willie Obiano to direct the state commissioner for transport as well as the Anambra State Traffic Management Agency to urgently enforce the decongestion of Oko road and direct all transporters operating within the axis of federal polytechnic Oko to use the Orumba-North Local Government Public Park and quit loading on the road.
The lawmaker who spoke to our correspondent concerning the plight of his constituents over the activities of commercial bus drivers in the area, said commercial bus drivers have blatantly refused to load their buses in the parks thereby causing heavy traffic congestions along Oko road.
Aforka noted, “The worst aspect of it is the incessant accidents arising from that because on many occasions, Tipper lorries always crush little vehicles like tricycles. Not too long ago, we got information that a Tipper lorry crushed a Keke and destroyed the lives of all the passengers in that Keke.”
He said such situation was worrisome and that government cannot fold it arms and watch lives being wasted as a result of indiscipline on the part of commercial drivers.
Cognisant of the fact that some portions of the road were bad, the lawmaker maintained that the Anambra state government has continued to carry out palliatives on it even though he observed that it was a federal road.
He equally pointed out that the indiscriminate parking of vehicles along the road has hampered the works of the Anambra State Road Maintenance Agency whom he said was unable to carry out maintenance works on the road due to lack of space for them to work as commercial buses blocked everywhere in the area. He stressed that it was of urgent public importance that the commissioner for transport responded to the situation to save lives and property in the area.