Interstate travels: FG to withdraw permit for transporters flouting safety protocols

The Federal Government says it will withdraw operational permit of transporters who flout safety protocols.

The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki, announced this in a statement signed by Mr Eric Ojiekwe, Director of Press and Public Relations in the Ministry on Wednesday in Abuja.

Saraki was quoted as giving the warning when she chaired a virtual meeting with the Forum of Nigerian Transport Commissioners.

She said that it had been resolved that the implementation guidelines prepared by the ministry would be adopted to minimise the transmission of COVID-19.

The minister pointed out that interstate transport operators should apply and could only operate on confirmation of satisfaction of the defined guidelines by the state ministry of transportation.

She said the ministry at federal and state levels would regularly monitor the implementation and compliance to the guidelines.

The ministry would also monitor the impact of the measure on safety and minimising the transmission of COVID-19 through the mass transit sector, she added.

According to the minister, the overall objective is to protect passengers, operators and workers as well as preventing the spread of COVID-19.

“The guideline has been fine-tuned with that of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

The guideline also required the registration of all private travel operators, parks and terminals operators.

“This is to ensure restricted access, social distancing, disinfection and sanitisation as well as have designated areas to isolate passengers with a suspected case of COVID-19 infection.

“Similarly, all passengers must be subjected to temperature checks and ‘no mask no entry’ policy must be adopted.

“Staff must be sent for COVID-19 training and must adorn Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) while on duty.

“Bus operators must observe all the safety protocols and limit their capacity to 50 per cent while windows must be open for short trips and the face masks should be worn throughout the journey,’’ she said. (NAN)