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Shaibu Apologises To Bike Riders Over Oshiomhole’s Comments

BENIN CITY – Edo State Deputy Governor Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu has apologized to the leadership of bike riders associations in the State, saying that they were not thugs but responsible men who help to grow the revenue base of Edo state.

Speaking shortly after receiving the leadership of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) led by Comrade Ohue Marshall and officers of the Association of Tricycle and Bike Riders of Edo State (ANNEWATT), Comrade Shaibu stated, “I have to correct the wrong impression created by the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC,) Comrade Adams Oshiomhole that okada riders are thugs.”

Speaking against the backdrop of the controversy trailing the riding of the Deputy Governor on okada into the venue of the first convocation ceremony of the Edo State University Iyamho, last Saturday, Shaibu observed, “Adams Oshiomhole rode on your bikes from Benoni, his residence then to the Election Appeal Tribunal that gave him victory. So, please let’s take it thst what he said was a slip of tongue by describing you as thugs. I apologise on his behalf.”

He said, “When you don’t celebrate good things, you will not be at peace with God. I celebrate you now that you are at your best.”

He reiterated that ANNEWATT was recognized by Edo State Government since inception in 2007 when the association decided to stick with Comrade Adams Oshiomhole against the then incumbent governor while he was busy seeking to reclaim his stolen mandate at the tribunal. These bike riders needed him because they believed in a progressive government”.

The Deputy Governor observed that the days of lawlessness were over where individuals took hold of the state revenue, celebrating their billions gained illegally while the state remained poor with local governments unable to pay teachers salaries.

He announced that the revenue profile of the State has improved with the introduction of technology and signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on collection of revenue and dues in a single due.

He said the partnership has yielded tremendous results in collaboration with the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and the Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) which has eradicated double ticketing, molestation and harassments .

He said, “We promised law and order, revenue was critical for the existence of the state/local government. Shortly after we took over, revenue rose from #1.5 million to #100million in Oredo Local Government alone, which showed the lapses and eradication of money going into private hands.”

In his response Chairman, TUC, Comrade Ohue Marshall stated that the union was well positioned now due to the intervention of government in running a smooth Secretariat and grooming a crop of responsible drivers.

Pledging loyalty to government with a vote of confidence for a government of continuity, Marshall stated, “We are professionals in bikes and tricycles. We are proud to have you in a government of continuity as sweet music is played twice and over.

“The unity in this government which exists between the Governor and Deputy is as strong as a family blood tie. We are no longer apolitical. We are everywhere. We will mobilize for you. We don’t talk much. We have strategy. Extra four years is non negotiable.”...

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