The ever-busy Benin-Lagos highway has been shut down by members of the Flicthers Association, Ondo State chapter, over alleged extortion and molestation by the Ogun State Government.
Members of the association in their hundreds stormed and blocked the Ajibandele and of the highway to protest the alleged hardship meted on them by the Ogun State through its revenue officials stationed at Ayota.
The protesters hindered the free flow of traffic movement for about 40 minutes.
The protesters carried different placards with inscriptions like, “Stop Unlawful Collection of N50,000 only from Our Members at Atoyo Junction”, ” Abiodun, Call Your People to Order”, “Stop Illegal Ticketing on the Highway” and “Unlawful Ticketing by Ogun State Govt. at Atoyo Junction”.
Comrade Mayegun Oloruntobi, the leader of the protest, expressed the association’s grievances against Ogun revenue agencies, which he described as inhumane.
“The government of Ondo State has created jobs by giving the association permission to work in forests in the state.
“But it was disheartening that the Ogun Govt. would stiffen the association’s means of livelihood through numerous and unnecessary ticketing while transporting their logs to Ogun State.
” We are Flitchers’ Association in Ondo State and we pay to the government in Ondo State. Our government has created jobs through timber work so that we will not be jobless.
” The government has done this for us through our natural resources but anytime we cross our trucks with goods to Ogun State, the state will bring illegal ticket worth 50,000 while we only pay N7,000 to Ondo State Government.
“And if we can’t pay, they will impound our vehicles and take them to Abeokuta and ask us to pay N2 million, ” he stated.