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Only 5% of commercial drivers in Cross River are trained — Commissioner



The Cross River’s Commissioner for Transport, Mr Ekpenyong Cobham, said on Monday that only about five per cent of the commercial drivers in the state are trained and certified.

Cobham made the assertion in an interview with newsmen in Calabar on Monday in reaction to a protest by some mini bus drivers in the state.

NAN reports that some commercial mini bus operators had protested the state government’s decision directing them to paint a uniform colour and obtain security coding.

The drivers had during the protest, described the decision of the government as harsh and exploitative.

The commissioner said that the decision to enforce a uniform colour for commercial transport operators in the state was for security and aesthetic reasons.

”This issue was discussed with the drivers before the cost was reduced from N80,000 to N51,400.

”Security coding is a law that has existed in the state since 2021. It is to enable the ministry identify the owners of vehicles and not just the drivers,” he said.

He said that many commercial drivers in the state flagrantly abused traffic laws because they lacked the requisite training and certification.

”It is sad that we have many commercial transport operators that are not professionals but transitory drivers.

”Many of them were motorcycle riders who moved to riding tricycles before becoming bus drivers.

”They do not have drivers’ licence, some of them that have licences did not go through driving tests,” he said.

He said that successive government’s had concentrated heavily on revenue drive without giving attention to safety and regulations.

”This attitude has bastardised the transportation sector, we have to sanitise this sector in the interest of our people,” he said.

Cobham said that the intention of the state government was purely to enthrone sanity and make the transport system safer for the people.

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