The Lagos State government has issued a stern warning to traffic offenders and commercial motorcyclists, known locally as Okada riders, who continue to operate on the state’s highways and restricted routes despite a ban on their activities. Anyone caught will face the full force of the law, according to the Chairman of the Lagos State Taskforce, Shola Jejeloye.
During a raid of the Mile 2 area of Lagos, 132 commercial motorcycles were confiscated for operating illegally and causing a nuisance to the environment. Jejeloye said that the recalcitrant Okada operators who have returned to some parts of the highways to carry on with the illegal activities believe that the state government has relaxed the ban on their operations. However, this is far from the truth, and the ban on the operations of Okada on highways and restricted routes across the state is still in place.
Jejeloye further stated that some of the Okada operators around Cele Bus Stop had engaged some police officers who were enforcing the law on Okada operations sometime last week but were met with resistance from the Okada men, which led to the death of a Police inspector. He warned that such violent reactions from these individuals who feel they can take the law into their own hands would not be tolerated.
The Chairman appealed to Lagosians who patronise Okada operators to desist forthwith or risk jail term, saying that the laws governing the transport sector of the state had been put in place by the state government to ensure the safety and security of all commuters. He also appealed to motorists who flout traffic rules to turn over a new leaf or risk having their vehicles impounded.
This move is expected to make Lagos a safer place for commuters, reduce the high rate of accidents on the highways and restricted routes, and restore sanity to the transport sector. The state government’s determination to enforce the ban on Okada operations is commendable, and it is hoped that this will serve as a deterrent to others who may be considering taking the law into their own hands. Keywords: Lagos State, traffic offenders, Okada riders, ban, Mile 2, highway, restricted routes, enforcement, safety, security, commuters, transport sector