Cross River, Akwa Ibom truck owners blame foreigners for N4bn haulage income loss


 

Truck owners in Cross River State have accused Indians and Chinese of invading the truck and haulage business in the state.

They alleged that they are responsible for the loss of over N1 billion in monthly projected revenue from the business for four months.

They made the allegation on Wednesday when more than 1000 dump truck drivers and owners from Akwa Ibom and Cross River states blocked the popular Odukpani junction federal highway to protest the activities of the alleged intruders.

“We are here to tell Nigerians that enough is enough, that our people should rise up and support us. The Chinese and Indians are coming to take over haulage activities in Cross River and Akwa Ibom.

“Sterling Oil and Gas are in Nigeria for Oil and Gas activities but today they have gone to import over 400 trucks.

“They deceived us to take loans from banks and buy trucks and after two months of operation they just stopped us without notice and the following week they brought in 400 or more trucks to take over haulage activities,” they said.

National Chairman of the truck owners association, Michael Asuquo claimed that there was an understanding between them to handle haulage activities and gave them a commitment to acquire 250 trucks.

He said they were surprised to see that they came up overnight and asked them to stop working and brought in their 400 trucks to handle the hauling of granite.

“The laws are there and we are asking that the law should take its course.

“We have taken loans from commercial banks and for the past four months, we have not been in business.

“We have lost over a billion Naira monthly since this started four months ago and we are also paying back bank loans.

“The nearest axle loads is between sixty to eighty tonnes but as we speak to you they are running with 120 to 140 tonnes, spoiling our roads and refusing to pay taxes”, he said.

They called on the state and federal governments to stop foreigners from invading haulage activities because the locals have enough capacity.

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