Indication emerged on Friday that the ban placed on the activities of members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers Union (NURTW) by Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State might be lifted anytime next week.
The word of assurance was given by the NURTW National President, Alhaji Nojeem Yasin while addressing journalists after a meeting with the Governor at the Agodi Government Secretariat, Ibadan.
Yasin who led the national and state leaders of the Union to the meeting explained that Governor Makinde had assured the leadership of his willingness to lift the ban provided the members can assure on maintaining peace in the state.
Confirming the development, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Taiwo Adisa said the presence of the state security chiefs who at the meeting revealed the security situation of the Union to the National President and his team made him agree that maintenance of peace and security is non-negotiable in the state.
Adisa further asserts the readiness of Governor Makinde to lift the proscription on the activities of the union provided they are ready to maintain peace among their members.
Makinde had proscribed the Union on May 31st, two days after his inauguration as governor, following pockets of violence and leadership tussle between the members as a faction who claimed to be loyal to the government of the day insisted on a change of guard at the Unions state leadership levels immediately.
But the National President who had earlier on the twilight of the immediate past administration visited the state to inform the outgone government of the constitutional succession plan of the union which he claimed had always been through congress and not guns and violence, as erroneously perceived in some quarters.
Yasin said “My mission in the state is to see the governor on the situation of our Union in the state and His Excellency has said that he did not proscribe the union on its own but that he did it in the interest of peace in Oyo state because there is a threat to the security of lives and property in the state and that was why he had to proscribe the union.
“He has asked me to go and meet our members and assure him that our members in Oyo state will remain in peace and they will not cause violence or hinder the movement of people of Oyo state and by the time I do that, he is ready to lift the ban on our activities.
“The governor even said if I can do it today (Friday) and give him the assurance today, he will unban it. There are no terms and or condition attached to the lifting of the ban other than for us to go and work things out with our rank and file and entire union membership and make sure that we assure him that there is going to be peace and that by the time we do that, he will unban our activities.
“I think with the assignment, within one week we can resolve it. Even the governor suggested that if I could stay back in Ibadan and resolve it today and tomorrow but I have another assignment in Zamfara, which I am already committed there.
“Within now (Friday) and next week, we will work it out and he has given us his words that immediately we can assure him of peace, he will unban us. And by the special grace of God, there is going to be peace because anyone who doesn’t want peace…, there is nobody that is above the law, I have told the security agencies that one person cannot hold the entire state to ransom and security operatives are there. I can assure you that the issue will be addressed soon.
When asked on the Union’s mode of changing leadership, the NURTW boss said, “We have a transition process. By August, immediately the national body conducts the national delegate conference, all states stand dissolved and within two months (from August to October), the whole 36 states leadership would be reconstituted. And Oyo state will not be an exception.”