– Hoodlums Attacking Our Members-JDWAN
Commercial drivers in Lagos State under the aegis of the Joint Drivers Welfare Association of Nigeria (JDWAN), have commenced a seven-day boycott of roads in the state. The protest left many commuters stranded on roads across the state as commercial buses were not available to board.
The JDWAN had vowed to boycott services across Lagos State on Monday over alleged multiple and excessive extortion of their members by the management of parks and garages in the state, as well as those attached to the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN).
However, the union alleged that hoodlums working for the Lagos State government attacked the drivers and injured several of them on Monday. In a statement by JDWAN National leader, Akintade Abiodun, the drivers vowed to continue with the strike, saying that they had made their points clear in their demands and that they expected the Lagos State government to meet their demands by putting to an end, the exploitations and violent harassment meted to them by the parks and garages managements.
“We have all come to the full understanding of the impact of the forceful, illegal, ludicrous, unjust ticketing, levies, and charges by the Parks and Garages Management Committee and caretaker committee. We can no longer continue to be subservient to people who have made life unbearable for us all and directly affects the cost of transportation, goods, and services in Lagos.
“We have explicitly made our points clear in our demands and we are expecting the Lagos State government to accede to our demands by stopping the exploitation of our labour and violent violation of our rights and restraining court orders against the motor park management and caretaker committee thugs in Lagos.
The statement alleged that one commercial driver identified as Ashimiyu Idowu, was abducted in the Iworo area of Badagry and that hoodlums in over 100 bikes with three thugs on each bike wielding machetes and guns were shooting sporadically to scare JDWAN members and commuters away.
“In the Ojodu Berger area of Lagos State, drivers were beaten by a multitude of motor park thugs and caretaker committee thugs over the boycott while they marched chanting “where are the other drivers?” The same broad daylight hunt of commercial drivers was spotted by our members in the Iyana Era area of Badagry.” Said the statement
Meanwhile, the Lagos State Government has summoned aggrieved bus drivers and other stakeholders to a meeting on Wednesday to resolve the issues raised by the drivers. In a statement on Monday by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Sola Giwa, the State Government said it is looking into the demands of the aggrieved bus drivers, to find permanent solutions to the issues raised by the Association.
“The move becomes necessary following the planned seven-day job boycott by the drivers over alleged “harassment and extortion by motor parks and garages management.” The statement said