14 February 2013

Nigeria: 135 Anambra Traffic Agency's Staff Sacked Over Extortion

Onitsha — About 135 staff of the Anambra State Traffic Agency, ASTA, have been sacked for various offences such as extortion, bribery, intimidation and harassment of motorists in the state.

Commissioner for Transport, Mr Chike Ohamobi, in an interview with Vanguard on the activities of the ministry said the action followed government resolve to purge the ministry of bad eggs.

He said the affected staff, who had been handed over to the police for investigation, would be prosecuted as soon as investigations were over.

Following the development, Ohamobi said the ministry had set up a monitoring team that would henceforth monitor the activities of the ASTA staff, saying the ministry would collaborate with the police, the Directorate of State Security, Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC, and other security agencies.

According to him, the staff of ASTA had no reason to be involved in extortion and other social vices when government had ensured that they were paid salaries and allowances promptly.

Ohamobi further hinted that the state government owned transport company, TRACAS, would soon be privatised on ground of poor performance.

He said only five of the 40 Peugeot Expert vehicles that were handed over to the management of the transport company by the Peter Obi administration were functioning, saying that the gesture was to resuscitate the almost moribund company before the end of this administration.

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