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Okada Riders Who Violate Lagos Ban Risk Three-Year Jail Term

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The Lagos State Government has warned okada operators and passengers that they risk three years in jail if found violating the ban on motorcycle taxis.

The warning is coming as the state begins the second phase of its ban on Thursday.

The State Commissioner for Transportation, Frederick Oladeinde told a news conference on Wednesday that the decision was taken to safeguard the lives and properties of Lagosians.

He advised the okada riders who operate in areas where the ban is effective to take up vocational training so they could do other jobs.

“The community of women's affairs and poverty alleviation involves a lot of people in vocational training. So you can pick up skills and do other alternative jobs apart from okada,” he said.

“We have the Ministry of Wealth Creation and Employment that engages people in internship training.

“We have the office of Civil Engagement that also deals with people with special needs.”

The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso, urged all residents of Lagos to support the government in achieving its aim.

He restated the transportation commissioner’s comment that okada riders can learn other skills to enable them to earn a living.

These include getting involved in the government’s First and Last Mile (FLM) bus scheme.

“We have also said that these First Mile and Last Mile buses: they are free to come and join.

“We don't expect them to come down with millions for them to be able to get these buses but they can come with cooperatives and maybe pay in installments and be part of the ownership scheme,” Mr. Omotosho said.

The Lagos State government launched the FLM in 2021 to bridge the transportation gap that was to be created with the ban on okada.

It announced a phased ban on okada operations on 18 May 2022, starting with six local governments.

It extended the ban to an additional four local government areas and six local council development areas on 18 August 2022.

Security agencies and the Lagos Anti-Okada Squad have been deployed to enforce the ban in the affected communities.


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