If the Nigerian government does not promptly restore the 21 essential highways contained in the NPC 621 billion NNPC Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme, oil tanker drivers have threatened to go on strike across the country.
At a news conference in Abuja on Wednesday, Salmon Oladiti, National President of the Petroleum Tankers Drivers (PTD), stated that the union had previously delivered a forceful and definitive ultimatum to the government over the awful status of federal highways and the miserable travel experiences of its members across the nation.
The Nigerian Union of Oil and Natural Gas Workers is a part of PTD (NUPENG).
Mr. Oladiti added that the planned strike will be called at the last minute since the agreement made in October 2021 to rebuild 21 vital roads around the nation under the NNPC Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme has yet to be implemented.
Highways have become death traps and truck-hijacking lairs for tanker drivers, according to the PTD head.
“We’re tired of accidents, being trapped on the road for weeks, and the fear of kidnappers, robbers, and terrorists attacking us,” he complained.
“Some of these routes have been taken over by these crooks. We’ve been working on this problem with substandard roads for over three years, and last year we secured a deal with the NNPC to reconstruct these important routes with a budget of N621 billion. Some of these routes are only a few kilometers long. Accidents involving tankers were virtually everyday occurrences. The danger that these routes pose to motorists cannot be understated”.
“Unfortunately, and much to our surprise, we learned from very reliable sources that some vultures posing as state governments, officials from the Ministry of Works and Housing, and politicians are already depleting these funds and embezzling highways and projects not included in the agreement approved by the Government. The Federal Executive Council is the governing body of the federal government”.