Injured victims helpless in hospitals 

Anselem Anokwute

Commercial Drivers operating within Imo State are currently living in fears following the alleged assault and attacks on the members of the Amalgamated Drivers Association by Lasbergers Group. 

An eye witness account disclosed that it was free for all on 17th September, 2020 at Lasbergers Corporate Office, new Owerri as thugs allegedly hired by one Chief Kingsley Nwachukwu of Bus Imo Association under the Lasbergers Company attacked members of the Amalgamated Drivers Association, a situation that left many of them injured while others are currently lying helpless in some undisclosed hospitals, within Owerri Municipality.

It would be recalled that Lasbergers group recently intercepted a vehicle conveying 3000 day old chicks an encounter which left the chicks dead in the hands of Lasbergers Emblems taskforce in Owerri.

Meanwhile, the leadership of Imo State Amalgamated Drivers Association, an umbrella Trade Union of All Drivers in the State has cried out over the rising series of physical attacks on their members from those purported to be working for the interest of the owner of Lasbergers group and Chairman of Imo State Park Management Committee, Chief Ifeanyi Okafor.

Addressing newsmen, the Chairman of Imo State Amalgamated Drivers Association, Elder Anaelechi Ukawunne   said that the ugly incident occurred when he was invited to a meeting at Lasbergers Office by Chief Ifeanyi Okafor to discuss issues regarding the indiscriminate selling of daily tickets in the state. On arrival with members of his executives for the meeting, he met the Son-in-law to the former Commissioner for Transport under Okorocha’s regime, Prince Lasbery Okafor Anyanwu, Chief Kingsley Nwachukwu who claimed to be the Chairman of Bus Imo Drivers Association at the gate who on sighting them immediately unleashed his thugs on them.

In his words, “what informed the meeting is that we had an unfavorable contract from Lasbergers who called us for a meeting to know the reasons behind our possible withdrawal from his job. The target is heavy.  So on that day, we went to Lasbergers office unknown to him that I was not alone and conniving with one Kingsley Nwachukwu and his thugs that attacked us. We sustained various degrees of injuries and were rushed to a hospital for treatment. Later, I personally called Chief Okafor to lay official report but to my greatest surprise he shunned me by telling me that I am stubborn. He queried on why should I come with other people when I sensed foul play, I reported the matter to police and to the current Commissioner for Transport Imo State to come to our rescue as our lives and properties were no longer safe.

 Elder Ukanwunne used the medium to thank the governor in a very special way for rising up to the  occasion to tackle the major challenges in the Transportation sector including the recent ban on taskforces and selling of emblems”. He called on the governor to help drivers on the indiscriminate selling of daily tolls and tickets by Lasbergers Company by ensuring that the issues of selling tickets and collection of tolls are harmonized.

When contacted via a cell phone, Chief Kingsley Nwachukwu acknowledged that there was a fight between his men and the Amalgamated Drivers Association but could not give the reasons behind the fight.

The Lasbergers Administrative Officer, Deacon Ideato Chikadibia Ideato, admitted that there was crisis, but insisted that Lasbersger Company has no link with the dastardly incident.