Anambra tipper drivers protest extortion, block access to Niger bridge


Tipper drivers in Onitsha, the commercial centre of Anambra, protested and blocked the expressway leading to and fro the Niger Bridge on Tuesday over alleged extortion by agents of the state government.

All efforts made by the military personnel stationed at the scene of the incident to dismantle the roadblock proved abortive, as their pleas fell on deaf ears.

Speaking to journalists, a top official of the Tipper Drivers Association, Onodugo Onochie, lamented that they were being extorted in Anambra, whereas the roads from where they load the sand remain dilapidated.

According to him: “Because of the bad roads in Onitsha that damaged our vehicles, we resolved to now load sand at Asaba, Delta State.

“So this morning, some of us who loaded at Asaba paid the N2,700 they demanded from each tipper in a day and on getting to the Onitsha end of the Niger Bridge, precisely at Uga Junction, adjacent to the military checkpoint, they also demanded that we pay again.

“Some boys stopped us and demanded that we pay before we leave. They said that they distributed the documented information last year in December and January, and I told them that we were not aware of that.

“They then said we should pay N3,000, but when we offered N1,000, they said no, and we had no other option than to block the road to end the saga once and for all.

“It is not that we don’t want to pay, but we want to know how much to pay daily or weekly, as the case may be and not each time a tipper passes, they collect N3,000 from the driver,” he said

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