Governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum, has threatened to deal decisively with drivers of heavy-duty trucks found overloaded with industrial and household goods along Maiduguri-Dikwa-Gambouru/Ngala Road. According to him, the 135-kilometre federal road, is a gateway to Cameroun, Chad and Democratic Republic of Congo. Zulum gave the warning in Maiduguri, while meeting with leaders of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Commissioner of Transport, Aliyu Mohammed Buba and other security agencies at Government House. He said: “I have directed the introduction of weighing for trucks plying the Maiduguri-Dikwa-Gambouru Border Road.”
The governor, who expressed disappointment over the nonchalant attitudes of some road users, said: “The truck drivers carry overloaded goods that destroyed border roads.”
He noted that the union had previously agreed to comply with government directives; but continue to breach the agreement on plying the roads. He continued: “What we want is to stop the issue of overloading. No one is stopping anybody from loading goods, especially trans-border trade.
“I and the people of Borno have expressed delight over the effort of the Federal Government led by President Bola Tinubu on the issue of trans-border trade.
“But that shouldn’t be at the detriment of the people of the state, as well as the Federal Government.” He lamented that the entire roads have been destroyed which led to the need to adhere to the rules and regulations on trucks’ minimum weights. Zulum insisted that any vehicle plying major roads but carrying goods beyond the maximum weight of truck loads shall be confiscated.
The governor said that vehicles coming into Maiduguri could also escalate the situation; pledging to ensure a wider range of publications for trucks drivers coming into Borno.
To curtail overloading, he said: “We will also look at the state laws if there is need for amendment, which would be sent to the state assembly for stiff penalties for defaulters, including the drivers.
“We want a situation where all trucks would load their goods not exceeding more than 40 tones each within the state,” he said.
The Governor, therefore, directed the Commissioner of Works, Mustapha Gubio, to ensure the completion of trailer park in four to six weeks.
Thanking Zulum for the measures, the Commissioner of Transport, Aliyu Mohammed Buba said: “This is an opportunity to amend some of the ongoing mistakes in the Ministry of Transport.”
The commissioner, on behalf of the ministry and NURTW, pledged to take necessary actions ordered by the governor. He added: “A weight-bridge will be built along the Muna-Gambouru-Ngala Road, just as Ministry of Transport and BOTMA will work with the Nigerian Police and other security agencies.”