By Gabriel Enogholase
BENIN—EDO State Government has ordered the arrest of a 3-man syndicate over illegal collection of revenue from commercial vehicle operators in Obakhavbaye Motor Park, in Benin City, the state capital.
Addressing journalists after the arrest of members of the syndicate, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Security and Surveillance, Comrade Emmanuel Orukpe, said the order for the arrest of the syndicate “was issued after we received report of the activities of the syndicate who were forcefully collecting revenue illegally from commercial drivers at Obakhavbaye Motor Park.”
He said, “The culprits who were led by one Igwe are being interrogated at the Oba Market Police Station. We are using this medium to warn other groups involved in this act to desist from it.
“The state government will not hesitate to deal decisively with individuals or groups collecting revenues illegally.”
Orukpe urged commercial drivers to pay revenues only to approved persons and local government revenue officials, adding, “the state government has continued to receive worrisome reports from Obakhavbaye Motor Park on the activities of touts collecting revenue illegally.
“We are putting measures in place to check the activities of the touts, especially at the Obakhavbaye Motor Park. Governor Godwin Obaseki’s stance against touts and illegal revenue collection is clear,”
A commercial bus driver, Omoruyi John, hailed the swift response of the state government and the office of the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Security and Surveillance in arresting the touts.
He said, “I was impressed with how the security and surveillance team responded to our call on a public holiday to arrest the touts. The response showed the kind of governor we have in the state. I commend him and his team.”
He added that Governor Obaseki’s tough stance against touts and illegal revenue collection has restored sanity to the operations of commercial vehicle operators in the state.