Written by Austine ELEMUE

Abuja taxi driver threatens UBER over character defamation

An Abuja based taxi operator, Mr. Edeh Ogechukwu, has threatened to sue UBER, a smartphone application that connects drivers to passengers in a given location, for defamation of character. 

Ogechukwu, who claimed to be operating his private commercial taxi since 2012 in the Federal Capital Territory without any hitches, decided to upgrade his service through the smartphone application for effective service delivery to his clients. 

He told our correspondent that in 2017, he registered on UBER platform as registered driver partner, but his personal car could not meet the car model required by UBER for operation. 

According to him, "I have been operating taxi in Abuja since 2012 without having any issue with anybody or government agencies. However, in 2017, I decided to upgrade my service through the smartphone application popularly known as UBER because I love the way they operate. 

"I registered on UBER platform as a registered driver partner and it was successful. I did that registration because my friend outside the country promised to ship a car to me to meet UBER's specification of 2003 and above model. 

"I waited for my friend to bring the car as promised, but I did not succeed. But in March 2019, another friend, Mr. Ali Jonathan approached me if I can drive UBER, I gladly accepted and he gave me a Toyota Camry car for that purpose. I even purchase a smartphone of N35, 000 to enable me access the applications. 

"To my greatest shock and dismay, a female staff in UBER, Ms. Onyenbushi on desk 04 told me that I have been deactivated from UBER on account of dubious character. When I asked for further explanations, she could not say anything to me. 

"To be honest, UBER has not defrauded me in anyway, but they have inputted on my character and they own me an explanations or I sue them to court of law. I am taking this steps because nobody know what tomorrow will bring. Nobody will assassinate my character and go free".  

When our correspondent visited UBER office for reactions, was not successful, as one of the senior staff on duty refused to comment on the matter.

He, however, handed an email address of one Fransisca Uririe, whom he said should have valid information to give via email. 

A message was sent to Fransisca through the provided email address, but no response was gotten from UBER for over a week.   



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