Interstate Travels: FG To Withdraw Permit For Transporters Flouting Safety Protocols

In a bid to curtail the spread of COVID-19, the Federal Government has threatened to revoke the permit of transporters that flout safety protocols while operating.

Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki who chaired a virtual meeting with the Forum of Nigerian Transport Commissioners in Abuja said the implementation guidelines prepared by the Federal Ministry of Transportation would be adopted to minimise the transmission of COVID-19.

According to the Minister, “It was also agreed that all interstate transport operators are to apply and can only operate on confirmation of satisfaction of the defined guidelines by the State Ministry of Transportation.

“Furthermore, the Federal Ministry of Transportation and Ministry of Transportation at State/FCT level will regularly monitor the implementation and compliance to the guidelines as well as the impact on ensuring safety and minimising the transmission of COVID-19 through the mass transit sector.

The overall objective, the Minister reiterated, is to protect passengers, operators and workers, to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and to provide support for stakeholders”.

In a statement made available to newsmen by Mr. Eric Ojikwe, the Minister also disclosed that the guidelines were fine-tuned with that of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and request the registration of all private travel operators, parks and terminals operators to ensure restricted access,  social distancing, disinfection and sanitisation and also have designated areas to isolate passengers with a suspected case of COVID-19.

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Similarly, “All passengers must be subjected to temperature checks, ‘no mask no entry’ policy must be adopted while staff must be sent for COVID-19 Conduct 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% while windows must be open for short trips and the face masks should be worn throughout the journey.

In addition, operators are advised on public road transport capture to enable for contact tracing” the statement noted.

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