By Ogbonna Casmir, Enugu
Blooding letting was averted in Enugu, as the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) clashed with Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) in Enugu for alleged breach of court judgment.
The two unions’ members clashed at Chris Chemist and Abakpa Junction along the ever busy Enugu-Abakaliki Expressway.
NURTW and RTEAN had been in conflict since 2014 over who owns parks.
According to an eyewitness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that members of NURTW stormed both Chris Chemist and Abakpa Junction were members of RTEAN where loading passengers with some group of cult boys and attacked them.
The eyewitness said it took the effort of some number of police to calm the situation, even as the police appeared to have taken side with the national union as none of the boys carrying axe and other dangerous weapons were arrested.
When the State Chairman of RTEAN, Comrade Chidiebere Aniagu, was contacted, he decried the harassment of NURTW on its law abiding members.
“My people called me from different branches today that members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) attacked them today with cultists and police are backing them arresting my members.
“I went to Abakpa Area Command to make complaints about attack on my members; to my greatest surprise the police detained my deputy chairman, Comr. Okwu and two others.
“When we asked the police why arresting our members, the police said that there is a court judgment against RTEAN.
“We said that the judgment in question delivered by Justice A.R. Ozoemena on March 17 had been appealed and stay of execution had been filed and served on all the parties including the NURTW, while the court has fixed May 11 for definite hearing on the application for stay of execution”.
Comr. Aniagu who accused the police of bias; thus, confirming the allegation that they had taken bribe from the NURTW, said there are processes of enforcing judgment order.
The chairman, however, said that as a law abiding union, they had drawn the attention of the state government over the incident through the Secretary to the State Government, who had promised to weigh into the matter.
Meanwhile, the police area command is demanding N300,000 for the release of three of our members detained at the Area Command, RTEAN chairman has said.
The state police public relations officer, SP Ebere Amaraizu when contacted said he is not aware of the incident as at time of reporting.
When the state chairman of the NURTW, Comr. Matthew Asogwa was contacted on phone, he declared comment.
Our correspondent reports that there is only one park in Enugu, which the court judgment banned the RTEAN members from entering at Garki; however, RTEAN members are been arrested along major roads and loading and off-loading points (bus stops) in Enugu.
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