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Arbitrary Charges: No movement across Warri river as boat owners file out in peaceful protest (Watch video)

…We are reviewing the situation – Union 

…It will be resolved soon – Julius Pondi

When the Warri Ferry Boat Owners issued their threat to proceed on industrial action over the arbitrary tax imposed on them by the Delta State Ministry of Transportation, nobody gave them attention. But 10hours into the strike action and peaceful protest that followed, the entire Warri metropolis is locked down and the state government embarrassed.

The union president, Mr Samson Timbowei who spoke to GbaramatuVoice explained that the decision was a collective resolve to fight this injustice as orchestrated by the Delta State Ministry of transportation, while adding that any of his members found flouting the order would be dealt with by the union.

He then went ahead and listed the various transport units embarking on the strike action as ; Ayakoromor, Burutu, Pessu, Obotebe, Ogbe-Ijoh, Ugbuwangue, Orugbene, Ijala, Odimodi, Odidi, Ogulagha/Sokebulou, Ekeremor, Jones Creek, Madam Dolphin, NPA Inside Jetty, NPA Outside Jetty, and Government Jetty.

As a demonstration of their decision to ensure compliance, members and passengers caught flouting the union’s order were  seen being redirected back to the shore,

Many passengers notably those of the Nigerian Maritime University (NMU) Okerenkoko and other marine traders were seen at the water shore stranded as they were taken unaware by the striking union.

A woman who spoke on the condition of anonymity complained of the untold hardship the protest has on her as no announcement was made before now about the impending protest.

Meanwhile, the member representing Burutu Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Julius Pondi, while speaking with our Correspondent promised that they have waded into the situation to have it resolved amicably in no distant time.

Rt. Hon. Pondi further explained that a decision was reached in a meeting with the tax consultant today in the company of the Senior Special Assistant on Conflict Resolution, Comr. Shedrack Agediga; Hon. Daniel Yingi, member representing Burutu Constituency in the Delta State House of Assembly; and Chief Emma Angbaduba, PDP Delta South Chairman.

As at the time of filing this report, efforts to reach the Delta State Commissioner of Transport, Hon. Vincent Uduaghan proved abortive as calls to his telephone line was not connecting.

GbaramatuVoice also learnt that the Warri Ferry Boat Owners Union are reviewing the decisions reached by the legislators with the possibility of calling off the strike later today.

By Abai Francis, Enaibo Asiayei & Shina Badmus

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