By CHIDI NKWOPARA
OWERRI—Franchise owners of vehicles in the fleet of Imo Transport Company Limited, ITC, have raised alarm over the N60 million debt owed them by the management consultant currently running the establishment.
The position of the franchise owners was made public by the National Chairman, Franchise Owners Association, Chief B. C. Igwe, after their meeting in Owerri.
Igwe said the N60 million accrued to the franchise owners from the 80 percent of the net cash realized from their franchise buses, lamenting that the management consultant currently running the ITC had allegedly refused to pay the bill.
However, several efforts made by Vanguard to get the management consultant, Mr. Emeka Duru, to speak on the issue failed as his aides continuously claimed he was not on seat.
Chief Igwe said franchise owners were getting their legitimate earnings regularly without hindrances before the takeover of the establishment by the present ITC management consultant.
He further alleged that the consultant had been extorting money from franchise bus owners through commuter manifest, cargo courier and promos.
Speaking also, the Association’s Secretary, Mr. Uzoeshi Moses Chidera, disclosed that more than 3,000 ITC buses belong to individuals, who chose to invest in the transport company.
“It is very sad that we can no longer get our money as at when due since the inception of the present management. Many of us have not received our money since December last year,” the Secretary lamented.
While alleging that the management consultant had at varying times issued dud cheques to franchise owners, Mr. Chidera also lamented the diversion of their earnings to another commercial bank, instead of First Bank Plc.