After last weekend looting of public and private properties in Osun State by hoodlum, the state’s Governor, Gboyega Oyetola, has set operational guidelines for commercial motorcyclists, locally referred to as okada riders in line with government’s commitment to ensure adequate securities in the state.
The modalities, he said, was part of efforts to firm up security in the state following recent looting and vandalization of government and private property as well as general disruption under the guise of protests against police brutality.
The Governor said that the duration of commercial motorcycle operators has been limited and that the Okada riders would now operate from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm every day.
Speaking yesterday during a meeting with Associations of Commercial Motorcycle Operators’ leadership in the state, Oyetola also issued a two-week ultimatum to the association to documenting their members, register their bikes, issue them tags and reflective jackets with bold prints behind showing different areas and units of operation.
According to him, security reports revealed that your members played major roles in the destabilization and breakdown of law and order that necessitated the declaration of curfew in the state.
Oyetola alleged that the okada operators ferried hoodlums from house to house to loot valuables and others property, adding that the riders were paid to transport hoodlums to destroy people’s businesses.
“I can also confirm to you that even the attempt on my life was aided by some of your members, who after our escape from the mob, gave my convoy a long chase and attempted to block our movement at different points. We also have security reports that some of your members are involved in all forms of illicit activities like robbery, kidnapping, and ritual killings.
“Considering all these, the government cannot pretend that all is well because the primary duty of government is to ensure security of life and property of its citizens. That is why we are mandating all the various associations of commercial motorcycle operators in the state to document their members, register their bikes, issue them tags, and reflective jackets with bold prints behind showing the different areas and units of operation.
“The government is aware that okada business is a source of livelihood to many and not all of you are criminals, but the events of the past few days have shown that the criminal elements among you have become a threat to the peace of Osun. I also appeal to you as leaders of the associations to advise your members to desist from allowing themselves to be used for criminal activities.
“This exercise is expected to be concluded within two weeks from the time of this meeting. The time has come to separate the wheat from the chaff and as leaders of the associations, please ensure this is done. Otherwise, government will have no option but to suspend okada operations in the state,” he said.
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