Nigerian Government creates committee for N10b palliative for road transport operators

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•President Muhammadu Buhari

The Federal Ministry of Transportation has constituted a committee to draw up guidelines for the disbursement of the N10 billion Federal Government palliative fund for road transport operators and workers.

The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, who disclosed this when the immediate past and the incumbent National President of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Alh. Najumdeen Yasin and Prof. Tajudeen Ibikunle Lawal, paid her a courtesy visit in Abuja, said the members were drawn from the Ministry of Transportation and all other relevant stakeholders in the transportation sector.

She urged the unions to interface towards having one recognised body that the Ministry could deal with so that the funds could be disbursed as soon as possible because palliative as the name implied, when over delayed, would defeat the intent and purposes.

Senator Saraki commended the union for its perseverance during the lockdown despite the fact that its livelihood was disrupted by safety protocols put in place by government to curb the spread of the virus.

Furthermore, she appreciated the fact that the sector had continued to thrive through sheer efforts on the part of members, adding that government was now positioned to improving the conditions of service since over 90% of Nigerians travel by road.

Earlier in his remarks, the former President, Alh. Najumdeen Yasin, said the purpose of the visit was to officially present to her the new National President of the Union and as well advise her to disregard the numerous associations posing as representatives of road transport workers and operators.

He further informed that the NURTW, which has existed for 21 years, was the only recognised representative of road transport workers and the Ministry should do well to work with it.

The new National President, Prof. Tajudeen Ibikunle Lawal, while thanking the Minister for granting them audience stated that NURTW members suffered directly and indirectly during the pandemic and prayed the Ministry concedes a larger portion of the palliative to its members. (SS)

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