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JUST IN: Lagos Govt. bans Okada operations in Mushin, Oshodi, seven other council areas

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

As part of the measures to further reduce crime rates across Lagos, the State Government has approved the ban of commercial motorcycle operations popularly called Okada in nine more Local Government and Local Council Development Areas (LCDA), increasing the number of councils affected to 24.

The councils affected by the second phase of the ban by the government were: Kosofe Local Government, Ikosi-Isherri LCDA. Agboyi-Ketu LCDA,​ as well as Oshodi-Isolo Local Government, ​Isolo LCDA.

Also under the second phase of the total ban introduced by the state government include Shomolu Local Government, ​Bariga LCDA, Mushin Local Government, Odi-Olowo LCDA as well as Ejigbo LCDA,

According to the state government, the total ban on commercial motorcycle operations in the new councils will become effective on 1st September 2022.

The Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, announced the total ban on Thursday while briefing newsmen on the progress made in the enforcement of the traffic law in the first set of councils where the total ban kicked off on 1st June 2022.

He noted that the governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has directed the Lagos Police Command and other security agencies within the state to compliment the Anti-Okada Squad that would be mandated to extend their operations to these new locations in a bid to stimulate seamless implementation and enforcement.

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“It is important to reiterate the state government’s commitment to the safety and security of lives and properties, hence, motorcycles impounded will be crushed and the process will be made public. The individuals, both riders and passengers, arrested will be made to face the full wrath of the law in line with the provision of Section 46, sub-section 1, 2 & 3 of the Transport Sector Reform Law (TSRL), 2018”.

Oladeinde stated that the ban was to further consolidate on the achievements made particularly due to the decline in accident and crime rate as well as to continuously bring sanity across the state.

He noted that reports of accidents and crime rates recorded by the Lagos Police Command and the State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) showed that Okada-related accidents have reduced by 4 percent, that is, 68 accident cases were recorded in June, 2022 as against 74 recorded in May.

The commissioner added that reports from the Ministry of Health confirmed that accident rates as it relates to commercial motorcycles have reduced to 63.5 percent in all general hospitals across the state indicating that 176 accident cases were reported in June as against 277 recorded cases in May.

According to him, the previously restricted corridors, Apapa, Lagos Island, Yaba, Surulere, Ikeja, recorded significantly low accident cases which indicates that the restriction is achieving its objectives which include a reduction of accidents recorded from June to 18 as against 91 recorded in May.

“Report from Commissioner of Police confirms as follows: Crime Rate. 14 crime cases were recorded in June as against 20 in May; ii. two crime cases as of 15th July as against 14 in June. Accident Rate: 23 accident cases were recorded in June as against 37 previously; two cases of the accident as of 15th July as against 23 in June.

“The data shows that the operation has significant gains and compliance rate in the concerned areas as available records shows that crime and accident rate has reduced astronomically by 86 percent and 63.7 percent respectively within the period under review and a total of 7,500 motorcycles have been impounded and crushed accordingly, hence, the need to sustain this achievement”, he added.

Aside from the statistics, the commissioner disclosed that resolutions reached during a stakeholders’ meeting on Okada ban were a state-wide ban considering the security challenges accompanying commercial motorcycle operations across the state.

Meanwhile, Oladeinde urged residents to embrace other alternative and sustainable modes of transportation provided across Lagos such as the First and Last Mile Transport Scheme, the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Scheme, the Lagos e-hailing taxi Scheme (Lagride), and other acceptable modes of transportation to go about their daily activities.

“Furthermore, the State Government’s existing interventions aimed at empowering its citizens should equally be accessed as an alternative means of livelihood for the affected riders. These interventions are coordinated by the following MDAs: Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA);(vocational training)Ministry of Wealth Creations and Employment;(internship programs)Office of Civic Engagement; Office of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) (Loan for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs, Lagos Economic Acceleration Programme “LEAP”); Ministry of Agriculture (Agric YES); Ministry of Education (CodeLagos Scheme) and many others”.

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