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Lift Ban On Motorcycles, Or Face Legal Action -Lawyer

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An Adamawa legal practitioner, Sunday Joshua Wugira has threaten legal action, after a seven-day ultimatum to Adamawa State Police Commissioner, Audu Madaki, asking him to rescind his ban on commercial transport motorcycles, tying the ban to the death of three persons and several injuries.
Wugira alleged that both the Inspector General of Police, Muhammed Adamu and the Adamawa State Commissioner of Police have trampled on the rights of Nigerians and the people of Adamawa to free movement and association already provided for by the Constitution of the country; and that the police acted illegally by not seeking the approval of both the executive and the legislature on an issue that has an impact on the economy and well being of the people.
Wugira made the remarks Monday in an exclusive chat with The Tide source,
while the police possess within its right the power to restrict movement temporarily in order to address a particular security concern.
Wugira said, it lacks the power to restrict movement perpetually to the point of causing grievous social and economic dislocation by its action.
Wugira explained that the imposition of a ban on transport motorcycles by the police infringes on the rights of ordinary Nigerians and specifically the people of Adamawa, who rely on the mode of transportation to carry out their day-to-day activities; and that the ban could lead to more loss of lives because emergencies like child delivery in most local communities are aided by transport motorcycles; with economic activities like farming and trading among other activities facilitated by this mode of transport.
He says that the life of ordinary Adamawans have been made difficult by the ban, especially the lives of the poor who use transport motorcycles to conduct their daily business and agricultural activities.
“The question we should ask is, does the Commissioner of Police have the power under the law for whatever reason to impose a ban on the use of motorcycles?
“He does not have the power because when he issues such a ban, it infringes on the right of movement which has been guaranteed under the law.
“He has the power to proffer solutions to the security of the state, but can he impose a ban without both the legislature and the executive accenting to it?” Wugira challenges.
He said, “This ban has far reaching consequences on the life of the people, especially in emergency situations, such as women in delivery and a host of other economic and social activities that are conducted in our local communities on motorcycles.
“Yes, he has the interest of the state, yes kidnappers use it for their evil acts, but that does not give him the power to unilaterally impose a ban that could cripple the economic and social activity of the state.
“Look at what ultimately happened in Gurin, where three lives were lost and several others injured as I reliably gathered.
“Primitive solutions cannot put a stop to the problems we have,” he said.
“Kidnappers and criminals use motorcycles but they also wear clothes, should we stop wearing clothes? They eat food, would we stop eating so that kidnappers go hungry? They use cars, are we going to stop driving cars?
“I am using this medium to give him a seven-day ultimatum to reverse his decision, it is undemocratic and reprehensible,” the lawyer declared.
“There are laws that govern this country and the IGP does not have the power to ban motorcycles because it affects the well-being of the people.
“While we call on the people to be law-abiding, I am sure the people will fight for their rights and I will be instituting legal action on behalf of the people of the state.
“I will be submitting a letter to the Commissioner of Police Monday challenging the illegal act and the police must reverse its decision.”

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Transport

Daura Community Expresses Excitement Over Transport University

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The indigenes of Daura,  Katsina State, have expressed excitement at the groundbreaking/construction of the University of Transport  in their community.
Some members of the community who spoke to newsmen shortly after the ground breaking ceremony last Monday, said that the construction of an additional higher institute of learning in the town was long overdue.
They, however, thanked the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration for making their dream come true.
The Galadima of Daura, Alhaji Ahmad Diddiri, said other than the secondary schools, the community had only one higher institution, the College of Legal Studies.
Diddiri said: “Education means power basically and the government has put in so much effort to build sufficient education for our people.
“Now, this is another big development for our people, having a university at our door step.  We will be able to have more graduates, more trained people in our community and country.
“This is not only for Daura area alone. Our aspiration is for our children to not only be educated but smarter; they should know how to behave.” He further said the institution would alleviate suffering of the people in the community and reduce the cost of acquiring knowledge.
Another indigene of Daura, Mr Yusuf Ibrahim, said the institution would boost the income and economy of the people of the state and its environs.
He said it was a thing of joy that the state would be privileged to have a specialised university.
He thanked the Federal Government for the initiative, saying that it would benefit not only the people of the state but the nation as a whole.
Mr Abubakar Abubakar who was also excited by the transport university, said:  ”there is going to be more income for the people around the area and more of our people are going to be educated.
“Our people will be more empowered and basically, it will translate to a better way of life for our children.

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Transport

Traffic Congestion: Commuters Resort To Rail Transport

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As road traffic congestion along Port Harcourt-Aba expressway bites harder, due to the on-going construction of flyovers at Rumuogba (artillery) and Rebisi (Garrison), commuters especially traders from Aba have resorted to the use of rail transport as an alternative means to road transportation.
The Tide reports that the deplorable condition of Oyigbo-Aba express way and the total neglect of the road by the Federal Government coupled with the on-going construction of two flyovers at artillery and garrison junctions by the Rivers State Government, has reinvigorated the patronage of the moribund rail transport system in the state.
The Tide’s investigation revealed that Aba traders are mostly the people patronising the rail transport more, giving the reason that it is safer and cheaper.
Speaking to The Tide, Emeka Ijebe, a passenger on board the train transport service from Aba to Port Harcourt wanted the train services to extend from Port Harcourt to the northern part of the country.
According to him, I joined train about two years ago to the north, but surprisingly now, they said they could no longer extend to the north and other parts of the country except Port Harcourt to Aba. To me, they should improve on their services, the condition of the coaches are very bad and the whole environment is unconducive, it is just because it is cheaper in cost of transportation and a bit safer.”
To John Ama, a trader from Aba and a passenger on board the train coach, “this is the first time I am joining the train due to the heavy road traffic congestion we are experiencing along Aba-Port Harcourt expressway due to bad road, especially around Oyigbo. To me, everything about the train is very poor “
Mrs Agnes Egbe, also a passenger and a business woman on board the train, said: “everything is wrong; the environment is so unconductive, the train, the coaches everywhere is dirty, the seat, nothing is good about it. It is just that it is cheap and the roads are bad and we have no alternative”.
However, Jude Ofoegbu, another passenger, “we are enjoying it, you can see us, this place is better than the road, this rail line is safer. When you stay here, you don’t have any problem, you can see everything is moving, everybody is free, the only challenge we have is that the train is very old. If government can provide new one for us, we will be fine”.
The Tide gathered that before now, the rail services operated from Port Harcourt to other parts of the country, especially northern states, but is now restricted to Port Harcourt-Aba with a fare of N200 only. The train stops intermittently at five points before reaching the station, a delay most passengers found uncomfortable.

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Transport

Residents Seek Govt’s Attention On Chokota-Ikwerrengwo-Umuebule Road

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Road users and residents across Chokota, Ikwerrengwo and Umuebule Communities, all in Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State, have decried the deplorable condition of the road linking the three communities, appealing to the state government for immediate attention.
Speaking to The Tide at the weekend, at Umuebulu, a community leader, Donatus Nweke, regretted that despite several promises to rehabilitate the road, nothing visible had been done.
He appealed to the state government to urgently repair the road and alleviate the harsh economic hardship the bad road has subjected them to.
Nweke explained : “Umuebule has the largest population and in fact, half of Etche population with more than 75 oil wells, but we are very surprised that all the oil companies, federal and state governments and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), neglected us after several meetings and appeals to them. It is too bad”.
He said that the affected communities would not relent in appealing and bringing the attention of the state government to the bad state of the road until the state road maintenance agency was drafted to remediate the road.
One of the traders in the market, Uche Agbaoso, told The Tide: “because of the bad road, my business has been affected badly. I have two vehicles but I am not using anyone. Our customers are no more buying our goods because of the inaccessibility of the road, we are suffering and we need government intervention”.
Another road user in the area, Emma Udoh narrated an ugly incident he witnessed on the road sometime ago. He said: “I saw Okada rider carrying a pregnant woman recently and both of them fell into the pothole due to the bad road. The woman eventually lost the baby. We are calling on the government and all relevant agencies to help us fix the road”.

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