Minister of State, Industry, Trade, and Investment who is also a governorship aspirant in Benue State, Chief Dr Samuel Ortom, has promised to partner with relevant authorities to upgrade major motor parks across the state to 21st century standards if given the mandate.
He made the pledge at a meeting with the leadership of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, in the state at Drivers’ House in Makurdi yesterday.
The aspirant regretted that more than 30 years after he had left the Gboko Motor Park where he had humble beginnings it had remained in the same deplorable situation saying he would modernize it and other major motor parks in the state as part of his employment generation platforms which shall include initiatives for members to secure low interest loans for purchase of vehicles.
He expressed appreciation for God’s intervention in his life through a member of the union, Mr. Mnenge Mtemave, under whom he underwent tutelage at the park and was also able to write and obtain academic qualifications with which he pursued further education.
Chief Dr Ortom who appealed to members of the union never to allow anything to hinder them from acquiring knowledge disclosed that he had used his experience at the park to establish a driving school with a relevant curriculum adding that he would deploy it further to disarm youths who were in possession of dangerous weapons and provide them and all the others with jobs.
According to the Minister if China with a population of about one and a half billion had been able to reduce unemployment to the barest minimum it was an indication that the feat could be achieved through partnership between government and the organized private sector.
He expressed happiness that the story of his association with the union had inspired countless people within and outside Nigeria and that the training he received at the park coupled with the fear of God had helped him to serve at all levels without blemish.
State Chairman of the union, Elder John Ishom, assured Chief Dr Ortom of support and urged him not to forget members after winning election while assistant secretary and special adviser to the Governor, Comrade Boga Abuul who described the aspirant as an ambassador of the union solicited his support for the construction of drivers’ lodge, sinking of borehole and establishment of ICT center.