Motorcycle passengers in Kebbi State have decried the antics of okada riders in the state, who always claim they do not have change whenever customers failed to give them the exact agreed fares.
The passengers accused commercial motorcyclists of deliberately doing that in order for such customers to leave the change for them.
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“Even if they have enough change in their pockets, the riders will never give you the change, especially when the change is around N20, N30 and N50, a passenger, Abdul Ahmed, said.
Ahmed explained that passengers easily forfeited the change because they thought the amounts were small.
“But for those that use to patronise their services for longer times in a day, if they calculate their forfeitures, they will know that the money is something,” he added.
Bala Usman said the actual amount he paid as fare to his office was N70, but that in most cases, he ended up paying N100 because he had to forfeit N30 change all the time.
He said what was annoying was that many of them did actually have the change but out of greed, always claimed they did not have.
Usman said the only way to check them was to ask them first if they had change, explaining that, “In most cases, if one asks them before patronising them, they may likely be honest, but even at that, some will tell you, ‘Yes, I have,” but when you get to your destination, they will start to act smart.
“That is when you will see them turning their pockets in and out, swearing to you that they thought they had. So, even when you ask they may tend to play same trick on you.”
Baraka who is a student, said she always ensured that she had enough change before patronising them, adding that if you failed to prepare for them; you would end up sharing your pocket money with them.
She explained that as a student it was always not difficult to get enough change as students within the campus made adequate use of lower denominations.
“We deliberately buy groundnuts and popcorn in the night in order to organise enough change specifically to deal with the okada guys,” she said.
Bello Gwanda, a commercial motorcyclist, however, debunked the claim, saying, “When you are dealing with many people, no matter the amount you keep for change, it will never go round, and that is the situation with most okada operators.
“You can’t rule out bad eggs, but I can assure you that if a commercial motorcyclist says he does not have change, he may be saying the truth. Members of the public should learn how to trust people,” he advised.