Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State

Niger re-opens Minna-Bida Road to fuel tankers, other articulated vehicles

*No articulated vehicle carrying petroleum products of more than 45,000 litres or 35 tonnes of dry cargo will be allowed to ply roads, says Governor Abubakar Sani Bello

*State Government requires support from Federal Government to carry out remedial work on Farin─Doki─Minna─Bida Road for easy movement

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Following the closure of the routes to heavy-duty vehicular traffic over alleged destruction of roads and hardship being visited on other roads users since midnight Tuesday, September 15, 2020, the Niger State Government of Nigeria has directed the reopening of the Minna─Bida Road to articulated vehicles in order to ease transportation of goods and services.

Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State gave the directive during a news conference, after a meeting chaired by Chief of Staff (CoS) to President Muhammadu Buhari, Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Director-General of Department of State Service (DSS), Group Managing Director (GMD) of NNPC and the Minister for Works and Housing.

ConsumerConnect reports the governor explained that the meeting was to discuss issues arising from the closure of the Minna─Bida Road and the state-owned roads.

Governor Bello said that he made a presentation to the forum on the deplorable state of the roads in the state, which was unanimously acknowledged to be due to articulated vehicles carrying excessive loads of liquid and dry cargoes.

He noted that the development had led to the destruction of the roads and caused hardship on other roads users.

It is recalled that sequel to the shutout of heavy trucks, including petroleum tankers from using all the link roads in Minna, Niger State capital, by the state government, petroleum tanker drivers had ordered their members to stop the movement of petroleum products from Lagos to the Northern part of Nigeria until further notice.

Mr. Salimon Oladiti, National Chairman of Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) in a statement Wednesday stressed that the action was informed by the Niger State Government’s shutout of heavy trucks, including tankers from using all the link roads in Minna, the Niger State capital, effective midnight September 15, 2020.

The drivers under the auspices of Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) had said: “Starting from tomorrow (Thursday, September 17), our members will not be lifting products from Lagos to the Northern part of the country because the Niger State government has shut out heavy duty trucks including tankers from passing through the state.”

However, the Niger State Governor has disclosed that as a way forward, the following agreements had been reached at the peace meeting with transporters across the state:

“That no articulated vehicle carrying petroleum products of more than 45,000 litres or 35 tons of dry cargo will be allowed to ply the roads.

“That there is need for special intervention for remedial works to be executed on Federal roads to serve as alternative routes, for trucks to move their products.

“That the State Government would require support from the Federal Government to carry out remedial work on Farin-Doki-Minna-Bida Road, for easy movement.

“The Ministry of Works said there were ongoing road repairs by the Federal Government and reiterated its commitment to completing the projects.”

Despite these fresh conditionalities, Bello said that he had directed the relevant agencies to temporarily open the closed state roads to ease the hardship of motorists and other road users.

He urged the people of the state to be patient with the decision of reopening the roads.

The Federal Government’s intervention would be effected soon, he said.

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