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NURTW protests against agency harassment in Kaduna


The protesters

Kaduna State residents yesterday trekked long distances to their various places of work as members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) protested against what it described as harassment and extortion of its members by officials of the Kaduna State Traffic Law Enforcement Agency (KASTLEA).

A bus driver, Salihu Usman, who ply Kawo to Sabo area, said: “The cheating and harassment is too much that we can no longer bear it. That is why we are out in large numbers to tell the world that we are not happy with the way we are been treated by this government agency.”

When asked if the leader of the NURTW is aware of the protest, he said: “We are been sold out by our leaders. They are only representing their interest, not ours.”

The state chairman of NURTW, Alh. Alhassan Haruna, described those who flooded the streets in the name of protesting over extortion as thugs who want to seize any available opportunity to cause chaos in the state, dismissing them as not bonafide members of the union.

“The union is not part of any protest, because I was in KASTLEA office earlier to meet the Director General on the way out over the new policy of tax collection from motorists, but surprisingly, information reached me that some hoodlums have taken over the streets in the name of NURTW to disturb the peace of Kaduna, by forcing citizens out of buses and stopping drivers from carrying passengers.”

In his reaction, the D.G. of KASTLEA, while addressing pressmen in his office, said: “In six to seven months since the agency has been existing, there has not been protest by motorists, why now?”

He described their action as a strategy by the opposition to undermine the government of the day, thereby making the state ungovernable. “We need to find out who this guys are and where they are coming from, because from all indications, it shows they were imported into Kaduna to forment trouble and cause disorderliness.”

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