The Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Mr. Oluwatoyin Fayinka, on Monday, presided over a reconciliatory meeting between the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) where representatives of both parties reached agreement over park operations in the State.
In his opening remarks at the meeting held in Ikeja, the Special Adviser said the meeting was called consequent upon the recent clash between both parties at Obalende, Lagos, noting that the development was worrisome due to the fact that both parties had cohabited peacefully for a long time, hence the need for an immediate resolution to forestall a reoccurrence.
Fayinka, therefore, implored the two parties to settle the dispute amicably, urging them to make necessary concessions and agree to enhance the peaceful resolution of their differences and ensure that peace reigns across parks in Lagos State.
Responding, the Lagos State Branch Treasurer for NURTW, Mr. Mustapha Adekunle (Sego), stated that the disagreement was about the control of park unit operations as agreed by both parties, explaining that the operation of tricycles in one of the Units under the control of RTEAN was disrupted by NURTW for their minibus operations.
Corroborating the Treasurer’s claim, the State Chairman, NURTW, Alhaji Musiliu Ayinde Akinsanya, (MC Oluomo), added that the boundary operations crisis that ensued between the Unions could have been averted, just as so many other issues that could have degenerated into crisis had been amicably settled in the past.
He, therefore, reiterated the need for the peaceful coexistence of both parties in Lagos State, suggesting a periodic meeting of stakeholders of NURTW and RTEAN to resolve areas of disagreements before it degenerates in order for peace to reign.
On his part, the State Secretary of RTEAN, Mr. Amusan Olalekan, maintained that the clash was avoidable going by the agreement of both Unions in maintaining the peace between them, noting that the crisis would have been averted if Union Leaders of both parties had taken proactive measures at resolving issues immediately they ensued.
The Vice-Chairman, Lagos State Chapter of RTEAN, Chief Gbenga Elesho, however, informed that the taking over of some parks, which were initially under the control of his union, by NURTW was one of the reasons for the clash.
At the end of the lengthy deliberations, both parties agreed that pending the return of Tricycle operations by NURTW at Obalende, RTEAN will continue with the operation of their minibuses with welfare fees paid to NURTW. A peace agreement will be signed by both parties at the Ministry of Transportation on Tuesday, 16th February, 2021.
Also present at the meeting were the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation, Mr. Kamar Olowoshogo; Director, Transport Operations, Engr. Abdulafiz Toriola and other Management Staff of the Ministry of Transportation as well as members of NURTW and RTEAN in the State.