The Lagos State Government has extended the ban on commercial motorcycles popularly called Okada to four more Local Govt Areas and five Local Council Development Areas.
As gathered, the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has directed full enforcement from September 1, 2022.
The additional councils where the total Okada ban is pronounced include Kosofe Local Government, Oshodi-Isolo Local Government, Shomolu Local Government, and Mushin Local Government.
Others are Ikosi-Isherri LCDA, Agboyi-Ketu LCDA, Isolo LCDA, Bariga LCDA, and Odi-Olowo LCDA.
Sanwo-Olu had in May banned the operation of commercial motorcycles on highways and six local governments and nine LCDAs. The governor announced that the ban is “indefinite and total”.
The six local governments listed by the governor are Ikeja, Surulere, Eti-Osa, Lagos Mainland, Lagos Island, and Apapa. The ban followed the February 2020 restriction placed on the activities of commercial motorcycles.
Sanwo-Olu said the Government took the decision in line with the State’s Transport Sector Reform Law of 2018 to immediately address the chaos and menace created by the operations of Okada in the listed areas. He told the police to enforce the order without compromise.
He said, “After a critical review of our restriction on Okada activities in the first six Local Government Areas where we restricted them on February 1, 2020, we have seen that the menace has not abated. We are now directing a total ban on Okada activities across the highways and bridges within these six Local Government and their Local Council Development Areas, effective from June 1, 2022.
“This is a phased ban we are embarking on this period, and we expect that within the short while when this ban will be enforced, Okada riders in other places where their activities are yet to be banned can find something else to do. We have given the notice now and we expect all commercial motorcycles plying the routes in the listed councils and areas to vacate the highways before enforcement begins. The enforcement will be total.”
Following reactions that greeted the ban’s announcement, the governor on May 24 insisted that the state government would go ahead with its proposed ban on motorcycles, adding that security services and government are on the same page with respect to the banning of motorcycles in the selected areas of the state.
He also assured that the security architecture of the state would not be compromised in any way so that Lagos residents will continue to live their lives and do their business without any fear or favour.
He said, “The security meeting gives us an opportunity for us to review the recent pronouncement on the future banning of Okada (motorcycles) in some selected local governments and LCDAs.
“We are able to put strategies in place. All of us were able to identify a lot of other things we need to do to embark on advocacy and ensure that we communicate effectively and efficiently to citizens. And that is why you see us giving out handbills in all of the major languages that we have in the country.
“There is a radio jingle being sent out to also communicate to people. I am also aware that there is a plan for advocacy on television stations as well.
“It is a people-driven initiative that we all agreed to live and to comport ourselves in a similar manner. And we know what has been the effect of this. So, I am happy that all of us, the security operatives and government are on the same page with this and we will also be going ahead with our plans.”