Executive members of the Ogun State chapter of Road Transport Employees Association Nigeria (RTEAN) have raised an alarm over alleged use of security agents to harass and intimidate them by their state chairman, Hammed Kuku.
Eight of the executive members claimed that Kuku took the action because of their uncompromising stance against his alleged “incompetence, corruption, gross misconduct and abuse of office”.
The RTEAN Secretary, Tiwalade Akingbade, who addressed reporters on Wednesday about the affairs of the association, listed Kayode Inaolaji, deputy state chairman (operation); Munirudeen Jimoh, deputy treasurer; Folami Folarin, vice chairman; Yahya Oriyomi, state auditor; Akeem Kolawole, state trustee; Kayode Kehinde, Kuto Motor Park chapel chairman and Akibu Titilayo (Efele), among others as executive members being threatened and harassed by Kuku.
Akingbade said their ordeal began when they passed a vote of no confidence in Kuku’s leadership and his subsequent suspension in December by 42 members, including the state executive committee and chapel chairmen.
The secretary noted that in January 2019, the union’s chairman was asked to step down through a letter addressed to him because of the alleged “incompetence, abuse of office and corruption”.
He lamented that rather than stepping aside; he remained adamant and kept hanging on to his position.
According to him, the chairman has also resorted to threats as well as sending security agents after perceived opponents.
Akingbade said petitions had been written to the Department of State Security (DSS) and Ogun State Police Command on the matter and appealed to them to wade into it before it degenerates into a serious crisis.
However, Kuku denied the allegations, saying he neither issued threats nor used security agents to intimidate his state executive members.
He also dismissed the allegations of corruption, incompetence, abuse of office and gross misconduct levelled against him by the executive members as “false and baseless”.
Also, the Ogun State Police Command, when contacted, said none of its personnel harassed RTEAN executives or members, stressing that the command met with the combatants recently, where they were advised to use peaceful and legitimate procedure to settle their internal matter.
Speaking through the command’s Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, it said every transport union has written constitution on how to change its leadership, advising that RTEAN executives and members should follow their own rules and take steps that could lead to a breakdown of law and order.