By Ignatius Ushie

Infinity Tyres

The national body of the Motorcycle Operators Union of Nigeria, (MOUN), an affiliate body of the Nigeria Labour Congress, has rejected in totality the latest move by the Delta state government to create what it termed an illegitimate rival union known as the Commercial Motorcycle and Tricycle Operators Association (COMTOA).

The Delta state government in a statement signed by the Secretary to the state government, (SSG), Dr Kingsley Emu on Saturday noted that COMTOA has been given approval to coordinate and supervise the activities of motorcycle and tricycle operators in the state henceforth.

The SSG also noted that COMTOA will commence the management and collection of levies from motorcycle and tricycle riders effective Monday, 8th January 2024.

Meanwhile, reacting to the new order by the Delta state government, MOUN president, Comrade Julius Ogenewevgba Bobi, FCPAN, called on security authorities in the state and at the Federal level to call the government to order, in order to avoid a situation where anarchy would be created in the state.

“The law is at our bosom and we shouldn’t allow the secretary to the Delta State Government to breach it, if not, our members will confront them and we shall be protected by Section 24 of the Trade Unions Act.

“So we’re soliciting that he should be called to order before there’s breakdown of law and order and its attendance consequences. We’re most obliged please”.

Bobi maintained that the issue had long been judiciously settled in MOUN favour in the High Court of Justice at, Udu Judicial division, Delta state, when Hon. Justice C E Achilefu, (MRS) ruled…… “That the Defendants are hereby restrained from further collecting Passengers Welfare scheme levies and motorcycle and tricycle taxes in Delta State as same contravenes Part II of the Schedule to the Taxes and Levies (Approved List for Collection) Act, 2004 (as amended)

“The Defendants are hereby restrained from further collecting taxes and levies in Delta State that are not listed in Part II of the Schedule to the Taxes and Levies (Approved list for Collection) Act, 2004 (as amended).f. The Defendants are hereby restrained from further using private tax consultants or private individuals or bodies for assessing and collecting taxes and levies on behalf of the Defendant in Delta State as same negates the provisions of Sections 2(1), 3 and 4 of the Taxes and Levies…”

MOUN president lamented that the new move is an attempt by the government to set the state on fire, “That’s an impunity and illegality taken too far by the Delta State Government.

“We’re commencing our operations on Monday to counter them,” Comrade Bobi stated unequivocally.

Comrade Bobi also cited a recent judgement where Justice Nelson Ogbuanya of the National Industrial Court (NIC), Port-Harcourt Division, has held that the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) by extant laws, lacks the power to register organisations under Incorporated Trustee, which has aims and objectives of a Trade Union.