By Michael Ofulue & Josephine Oguntoyinbo
Any motor dealer operating in Akure, the Ondo state capital, that fails to comply with the government’s directive to relocate to automart allocated for selling vehicles, would henceforth face the full wrath of the law, government has warned.
The State Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Prince Sola Amodeni, who disclosed this to The Hope Metro at the weekend, said offenders would be arrested and prosecuted.
The government, had last year issued an ultimatum to all motor dealers, using resident areas for their car businesses to move to the allocated area at Akure Automart along Akure/Ilesha road, or face sanctions.
The Hope Metro, however, gathered that at the expiration of the ultimatum, many motor dealers operating in the state capital were yet to obey the government’s directive, as they are still using resident areas, mechanic workshop and other unauthorized areas to display their vehicles.
Speaking with The Hope Metro on the development, Amodeni said that he has invited motor dealers for a meeting and explained to them the reasons why they should relocate to the automart to carry out their lawful businesses.
His words, “We invited them to a meeting and they also called us for their own association meeting.
” We talked about the matter. Though some of the motor dealers are in places carved out and fenced. We are not after those ones.
“But we are after those in unauthorised places causing problems. We gave them ultimatum and they promised to relocate. We even did several jingles to sensitise them.
“At the expiration of the ultimatum we moved out and seized some vehicles. But after several pleas from some quarters, they wrote undertakings that it would not repeat itself.
“Three weeks later, they went back to the streets again. We moved out with some security operatives to tow the vehicles. We arrested some defaulters and charged them to court.
“After two adjournments and so many pleas, we decided to withdraw the case from the court. These people wrote undertakings again. But we later discovered they were back on the streets again.
“We need weekly monitoring. They are becoming nuisance in the town. “The Motor dealers association even disowned and disassociated themselves from those selling vehicles outside automart.
After the budget, we will take the matter to Mr governor.
When The Hope Metro moved round Akure metropolis to ascertain the level of compliance, it was observed that despite the government’s directive, some of the so-called motor dealers are still displaying in unauthorised areas.