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Okada ban: Lagos says June 1 deadline won’t stop enforcement

The Lagos State Government says the seizure of commercial motorcycles by the Lagos State Task Force will continue in spite the June 1 deadline.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu had on Wednesday issued a fresh total ban on okada use in six Local Government Areas.

These are Eti-Osa, Ikeja, Lagos Island, Lagos Mainland, Apapa and Surulere.

Sanwo-Olu said that with effect from June 1, security operatives should enforce the proscription order across the listed councils.

The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso, said in a statement on Thursday said that the deadline does not invalidate the provisions of the Lagos State Transport Sector Reform Law of 2018.

Omotoso said that the Law stated that “no persons shall ride, drive or propel a motorcycle or tricycle on a major highway within the state, and any person in contravention of this provision commits an offence” and would be made to face the wrath of the law.

He said that the Lagos State Task Force, led by CSP Shola Jejeloye, had continued to enforce the law and had seized 238 motorcycles in Lekki on Tuesday and Wednesday.

According to him, in Iba, on Lagos-Badagry Expressway, where it was violently resisted on Thursday, the Task Force seized 195 motorcycles.

Omotoso said: The riders were operating on highways and bridges in flagrant disobedience of the law because, according to them, they are free to ply unauthorised routes till June 1.

“This is wrong.

“The February 1, 2020, directive has not been reversed.

“The enforcement was weakened by COVID-19, which affected all areas of life.

“Now, the action is being reinforced.”

The Commissioner commended residents who had come out to support the ban on commercial motorcycles in the six local government areas.

He reiterated Governor Sanwo-Olu’s order that the ban from the six local government was the “first phase” of the action, that had been triggered by safety and security concerns.

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