Lagos State Government has given motorcycle riders, popularly known as Okada riders, a 21-day ultimatum to leave restricted routes. The government met with okada unions on Thursday [Jun 25] at the state secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos, where the ultimatum was given.
The Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Tunji Bello, who chaired the meeting, said the government decided to give the riders 21-day ultimatum for the unions to sensitise their members to vacate the restricted routes before enforcement would begin.
We have held a meeting with the okada unions on what should be done. We had a meeting with security agencies before now on the resurgence of okada riders on the highways. They said they thought that the government had relaxed the law; there is no relaxation. We have decided to give them three weeks for enlightenment because we are not doing anything new; what we are doing is to re-enforce the law.
The SSG said when the law was introduced in 2012, okada accidents reduced. He stated that enforcement was relaxed during the last elections so that political parties would not capitalise on the enforcement for cheap political gains.
“We relaxed enforcement during the general elections because we didn’t want crisis and violence. We needed to avoid crisis at that time so that political parties would not capitalise on it. The enforcement will be in full force after three weeks. This is a law already in place and it has to be obeyed,” he said.