By Ozioruva Aliu – Benin City
There was chaos in several parts of Benin City, Monday, as bus drivers mostly those driving mini-buses withdrew their services from the roads over alleged extortion by personnel of the Edo State Traffic Management Agency (EDSTMA) and Public Works Volunteers (PUWOV).
Commuters going from Wire Road to Ugowo, New Benin to Ugbowo had to trek long distances before they could get vehicles and the vehicles terminated their trip by Uselu forcing commuters to trek the remaining distance to their destinations as the protesting bus drivers blocked parts of the Benin–Ugbowo Road.
The drivers took over some sections of the road causing traffic in some areas while other sections were completely deserted.
One of the drivers, Emmanuel Kanya complained that there are not enough signs on the road to show where they can park or not and that the extortion is telling on their ability to pay back the buses they have acquired on hire purchase between N2.7m to N3m.
But the Managing Director of EDTSMA, Dennis Oloriegbe denied the allegation saying “We have gone the extra mile to educate them on where they should park or not park.
“We put signposts and they go to remove them at night. We have arrested a driver with our signposts in his boot so they have to obey the laws”.
He however said the Agency is having a roundtable with the drivers.