By Myke Agunwa
Transport operators in the South-East with takeoff points as Onitsha, Anambra State has threatened to boycott Lagos and all routes to the North due to worsening insecurity, intractable robbery attacks and continued abduction on the highways leading to Lagos, Abuja and other parts of the North.
The transporters in a protest at Onitsha Upper Iweka on Wednesday threatened that if nothing was done urgently to address the situation, they would abandon those routes and pack their vehicles in their garages for safety.
The protesters included luxury bus owners, commuter buses and executive Sienna bus operators.
They vowed to mobilize other transport operators who ply Enugu, Aba and Port Harcourt to join the down tool so as to cripple socioeconomic activities nationwide.
The group decried several incidents of armed robbery attack and abduction of passengers on the highways after the #EndSARS protests.
Speaking to newsmen, the Manager, God’s Will Transport, Emenike Okafor, identified Benin bypass – Ogbemudia farm to Ore and Kogi -Lokoja–Abuja highway as the most dangerous spots where the bandits operated unhindered.
He said, “In the last two weeks, there have been recorded cases of robbery and abduction involving Sienna and Hummer buses with about six passengers kidnapped in the mentioned areas.
“We called on the Inspector General of Police to activate its rapid response mechanism and the establishment of a joint patrol team involving the army, police and civil defence corps in the affected areas.
“Travelling has become increasingly risky owing to the security challenges.
“Those who unleashed the attack did that to destabilise the country’s security network and they should not be allowed to succeed. We want the police to go back to their duty posts with renewed vigour and zeal.
“Let the government motivate them by improving their welfare packages and ensure that those casualties already recorded receive adequate compensation.”
While commiserating with the police over the casualties and losses recorded during the #EndSARS protests, Okafor stressed that no responsible citizen no matter how highly provoked would engage in burning, looting and attacking the police facilities.