Foremost senior lawyer, Usungurua Bassey, on Tuesday countered the Attorney General of Akwa Ibom State, Uko Udom SAN’s view that his clients who are commercial bus drivers and tricycle operators in the state are criminals.
Bassey rose in defence of the transporters at the Akwa Ibom State High Court, Fulga Street, presided over by Justice Ibritam.
The lawyer said it was unfounded for the Attorney General, via his lawyer, Bassey Ekanem, to label his clients with such tag.
He said he could attest to the character of his clients.
Continuing, Bassey prayed the court for extension of time for filling of counter affidavits and reply to notice of preliminary objection.
The presiding judge granted his prayer and adjourned the case to 29th September, 2023, for adoption of the processes of preliminary objection.
The Attorney General, Ministry of Transport and Ministry of Environment, through their counsel, Bassey Ekanem, were overruled by the court for opposing the plaintiffs’ plea for time extension.
The case was filled by transporters including Charles Okon Ekpo, Abel Udo Jeremiah, Inemesit Edet Ubaha, Bassey Effiong Udofia and others, against harassment of commercial bus drivers and tricycle operators, impoundment of vehicles, and multiple taxation.
The case has the Akwa Ibom Attorney General, Ministry of Transport, Akwa Ibom Internal Revenue Service, Ministry of Environment, Akwa Ibom State Environmental Protection and Waste Management Agency, Nature Control Company Limited, and Mr Nkereuwem Eniang (a private consultant) as defendants.
Meanwhile, the Township Drivers Association of Akwa Ibom State (TDAAKS) has inaugurated a five-man caretaker committee to pilot its affairs for three months in preparation for election of a substantive executive committee.
The caretaker committee has Comrade Edet Martins Okon as Chairman; Victor Bassey Adam, Secretary; Aniefiok Edet Effiong, PRO; Celestine Godwin Peter, Financial Secretary; and Emmanuel Kennedy, member.