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Luxury bus owners, mass transit operators form ‘coalition’

By Theodore Opara

IN an unprecedented endeavour aimed at presenting a common platform on matters concerning inter-city road transportation in the country, two of the foremost groups in the sector have announced the formation of ALBON & AMTO Coalition.

The two umbrella bodies – Association of Luxury Bus Owners of Nigeria (ALBON) and Association of Mass Transit Operators of Nigeria (AMTO) – consummated the coalition with a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which was signed in Enugu.

ALBON, currently led by Sir Dan Okemuo as the President, is bringing all its members to the alliance, including major stakeholders in the luxury bus transportation, like The Young Shall Grow Motors Ltd, Chisco Transport Nigeria Ltd, ABC Transport Plc, GUO Transport Nigeria Ltd, Bonyway Motors Nigeria Ltd, Ifesinachi Industries Nigeria Ltd and Cross Country City Bus Ltd.

Similarly, AMTO with Chief Godfrey Inyaba as National President, is going into the relationship with all its members, some of which are Peace Mass Transit Ltd., Okeson Nigeria Ltd, Onitsha South Mass Transit Ltd and Chukwuonye Mass Transit Ltd, among others – all big names in the mass transit business.

Signed on May 11, 2017, the MoU stipulates that ALBON & AMTO Coalition would henceforth be the official platform for the two registered associations in the inter-state passenger transport business to speak with one voice on all issues of common interest.

Among other objectives, the MoU specifically states that the coalition shall address challenges confronting all bus owners and operators in Nigeria, such as bad road network; multiple taxes/levies on the inter-state passenger transport businesses; and insecurity on the highways across the country.

Also on the list of problems the partnership intends to seek solutions to is the constantly rising costs of operating their vehicles on various routes, which they blamed on “high rate of foreign exchange fluctuation, fake motor spare parts, high cost of diesel and petrol, as well as high duty of 35 percent charged on imported inter-state passenger buses at the ports”.

ALBON & AMTO Coalition plans to work towards the merger of the two associations and seek to bring all bus owners and operators throughout the country under “one united inter-state bus association.”

To facilitate the achievement of the objectives of coming together, an eight-member steering committee headed by the two Presidents {Okemuo of ALBON and Inyaba of AMTO}, was constituted at the signing ceremony to pilot the coalition.

As mandated by the MoU, the steering committee will endeavor to reach out to other inter-state bus owners and operators across the country in line with the objective of uniting all such stakeholders in order to form one formidable bus owners association.




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