Accident: Peace Transport Owner Vows to Sack, Prosecute Reckless Drivers

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Christopher Isiguzo in Enugu

Irked by two major accidents involving his buses which claimed 22 lives in Abia and Bayelsa states, management of Peace Mass Transit (PMT) yesterday threatened to henceforth sack and prosecute any driver that consumes alcohol while driving on the roads.

The company reeled other disciplinary as well as precautionary measures against drivers to checkmate the increasing spate of road traffic accidents on the nation’s highways involving their buses.

Onyishi said during the National Press Conference cum Lunch of
Defensive Driving Campaign against the backdrop of recent accidents
involving the company’s buses said he would not tolerate any form of recklessness on the part of the drivers.

Maduka disclosed that the company had concluded plans to carry out
Alcoholic Text test for drivers of Peace Mass Transit on the roads, stating that any driver on the road that tests positive to Alcohol would be sacked and handed over to the police for prosecution.

He expressed dismay over the last two fatal accidents that involved buses of the company along Umuahia Express and Beyelsa Roads, which claimed the lives of many innocent passengers and drivers, disclosing that after the accidents, the Board
and Management of the company has lunched a campaign tagged” Defensive Driving” for over 3000 drivers of the company.

He said though it was unfortunate that the accidents happened and
claimed many lives, investigations so far conducted revealed that his drivers were not culpable in the incidents as shown in the reports of the police and the Road Safety.

While re-stating his threat to sack any of his drivers that misbehaves, Maduka appealed to the public to learn how to accord respect to drivers to enable them serve them better, he urged customers to report promptly to the management of the company whenever any driver on the roads misbehaves.

He noted that at the point of employment of drivers PMT follow a set of standard, adding that her prospective drivers must have valid drivers, license, medical certificate of fitness from a government hospital, visual certificate report, drug test report and must be 31years of age but not more than 40 years.

“And such a person must have driven commercial vehicle for at least 5 years; amidst all these, priority is on married men. furthermore, prospective drivers must bring guarantors among who must who must be his immediate family member, religious head and community leader. A local Government ID letter is also a prerequisite. We take time to
verify all submissions before short listing anyone for interview. After our oral text, a practical test is conducted by a committee made up of
a retired FRSC officer, 2 retired drivers, a psychologist , a retired
traffic officer, and a mechanic engineer” he stated.

Maduka further explained that every PMT driver must attend training four times in a year; first quarter,second quarter. third quarter, the last quarter, adding that each of these quarters, it is packaged in
it,s peculiarity.

“We have resource persons coming from training unit of the Fedral
Road Safety being the supervisory body of road transport sector, Industrial training Fund also partner with PMT on training, just as Automotive Companies who manufacture the vehicles also send resource persons from China, Dubai, South Africa and Japan.

“PMT patrol teams strategically located on all our routes for timely intervention in case of breakdown, accident and other unforeseen situations capable of interrupting the journey. They engage on the-spot- assessment of drivers’ performance ; get feedback from customers on drivers’ on -road conduct and their , assessment of the
PMT management team generally. PMT , the foremost transport to establish this kind of team, equipped members of the team with training members of team with training to execute multiple tasks excellently and be able to make good use of the first aid apparatus in their possession” he stated.

While expressing surprise over the involvement of Peace Mass Transit Buses in accidents in recent times despite the high safety record the company achieved in the industry, Maduka called on all well meaning
Nigerians to avail them any other possible solution that they have not implemented” and we shall be willing to adopt for implementation” ends

Ayade, Service Commanders Embark on Operation show of force in Calabar

Barely 24 hours after reading the riot act to criminals to look elsewhere for their nefarious activities, Cross River State Governor, Prof Ben Ayade and Service Commanders in the state yesterday embarked on operation show of force across Calabar.

Briefing news men shortly after the exercise, Ayade explained that the exercise was a deliberate measure to let the miscreants know that his team was in absolute control of the entire situation.
According to him, “We are out here as a show of force to demonstrate that we are in absolute control and we are going to keep Calabar totally safe,” adding that “we have done a complete surveillance of all the possible routes, all the water areas through which these criminals escape.

“We know who they are, the security and intelligence report has shown clearly the people who are behind all these activities and I can assure the people of Cross River State that Calabar is indeed peaceful and they should go about their legitimate businesses peacefully.”

The governor, who affirmed that all specific locations have been marked, even as access to water fronts will be cut off, hinted that “we are also embarking on a door to door search, and cordoning off of Calabar to ensure that nobody exits without a thorough search.”
Ayade further added: “I am sure that with the number of combat vehicles, with the armoury they (criminals) saw on display today, including military officers, combined team, Operation Skolombo, all on duty, tells you that Cross River State is an action state and we can’t afford the agony of having any tension any more.”

On measures to sustain the exercise, the governor explained: “As a fallout of our security meeting yesterday (Friday) and today, we will make adequate budgetary provision, reduce some of our spendings while transferring some of the overheads to guarantee sufficient ammunition as well as other security and logistics support.”
Cross River Commissioner of Police, Jimoh Ozi-Obeh assured that his men will continue to protect the lives and property of the citizenry.

“Those who have legal businesses should go about them peacefully, but those who have illegal businesses should run away, “the Police Commissioner warned.
Buhari Advises Against Extending Tenure of Current Managing Director of NDDC
Okon Bassey in Uyo.
After a six months acting capacity by Mrs. Ibim Semenitari as the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), President Mohammadu Bhuhari has been urged to appoint an indigene of Akwa Ibom State from any of the oil producing communities as the substantive Managing Director of the Commission

A coalition of youth groups in Akwa Ibom State, under the aegis of Federated Akwa Ibom Youths Association (FAYA) made the call in Uyo, urging Buhari to ignore any lobbying for the extension of the tenure of the current Managing Director of the Commission.

The Chairman of the youths group, Comrade Obisung Ulo-Obisung said it was unjust, provocative and unnecessary pressure by paid agents, groups and individuals canvassing for an extension or outright appointment of Mrs Ibim Semenitari, as the substantive Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

The group urged the President to do the needful by appointing any competent indigene of the state from the oil producing communities as the substantive Managing Director of the Commission to reduce unnecessary agitation in the region.
Mrs Semenitari who was appointed in December 2015 as the Acting Managing Director of the commission has already done six months in acting capacity and already in the seventh month which is a clear breach of period allowed for acting capacity in any office.