It was gathered that having lost billions of naira due to the 98-day lockdown, they had expected they would deploy the palliative to beef up their business but up till today they are yet to benefit.
In a letter dated March 28, 2021 addressed to the Minister of State for Transportation, signed by the Deputy President of Public Transport Owners of Nigeria Association (PTONA), Emeka Mamah, the group pleaded for the verification of two key issues as it concerns the fund.
First, PTONA pleaded to the Minister to correct apparent confusion in treating the N10 Billion covid-19 palliative fund approved for Road Transporters as MSME Survival fund domiciled with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.
The group also asked for immediate disbursement of the N10bn Covid-19 palliative fund to their members to prevent the imminent collapse of interstate passenger transport companies in Nigeria.
According to PITONA, efforts to secure an appointment to pay a working visit to the Honourable Minister to discuss issues relating to the inordinate delay in disbursing the fund to road transporters was not granted.
Lamenting further, PITONA insisted that the N10Billion Covid-19 Palliatives Fund approved by the Federal Government is totally different from an aspect of the N60 Billion MSME Survival Fund domiciled with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment,adding that “the N10Billion Covid-19 Palliative Fund was meant to assist road transporters to resuscitate their businesses that were on negative income throughout the 14 weeks that the country was on complete lockdown for all interstate passenger movement due to Covid-19 Pandemic”