The Lagos State Government has threatened to henceforth arrest and prosecute passengers who still patronize recalcitrant commercial motorcycle operators popularly referred to as Okada who still ply the banned routes, warning them to desist from such acts.
The government has said that both the Okada riders and passengers who are found guilty of plying those routes banned by the government will face a penalty of either 3 months jail term or N50,000 fine, or even both as may be determined by the courts.
This was made known by the Chairman of Lagos State Taskforce, CSP Shola Jejeloye, who described the activities of the recalcitrant Okada operators as rebellious and promised to ensure that those who continue to disregard the ban would have their bikes confiscated and crushed by the state government.
Jejeloye who was speaking on the enforcement exercise which took place in Agege/Fagba, Apapa and Ajah, further stated that 322 bikes have been seized since the commencement of the week-long raid in the aforementioned areas of the State, assuring citizens that more will be done until the State’s vision of maintaining safety and sanity on Lagos roads is actualised.
Taskforce to continue with enforcement
The Lagos State Taskforce continued with its enforcement of the ban on commercial motorcyclists that ply restricted highways, particularly in the 6 Local Governments Areas and nine Local Council Development Areas across the State.
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Jejeloye said, “We intend to continue embarking on raids across the State towards ensuring a total clampdown on bike operators violating the ban on plying major highways in the six Local Governments Areas and nine Local Council Development Areas till total compliance is attained.’’
While threatening to arrest and prosecute recalcitrant Okada riders and passengers who patronize them, Jejeloye said, “Both passengers and riders are culpable if found operating on routes banned by the State Government and both will face a penalty of either three months jail term or N50,000 fine, or both as pronounced by the courts.’’
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The Chairman, therefore, enjoined Lagos residents to embrace alternative means of transportation which are safer and in line with the State’s inter-modal transportation vision.
What you should know
- Recall that on May 18, 2022, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, had announced a total ban of commercial motorcycle operators in 6 local government areas in the state.
- This came barely 2 days after a task force in the state embarked on a serious clampdown of Okada riders on the Lekki axis in a move that appears to be connected to the outrage that greeted the killing and burning of a young man, simply identified as David by suspected motorcyclists in the Admiralty area of Lekki, Lagos.
- The affected local government listed by the governor includes Ikeja, Surulere, Eti-Osa, Lagos Mainland, Lagos Island, and Apapa.
- The new directive from the governor appears to be a follow up to the February 2020 restriction placed on the activities of these commercial motorcyclists in these areas.
- Also earlier in June, the Lagos State Government inaugurated Anti-Okada Squad to further enforce the clampdown on commercial motorcyclists in the state which is in line with the Transport Sector Reform Law (TSRL), 2018