Amidst anxiety and tension across Lagos State as the total ban on commercial motorcycles popularly known as Okada takes effect, many riders have started relocating, findings by Daily Trust have shown.
Many of them are either relocating to their towns and villages while others are relocating to neighbouring states like Ogun and Oyo States.
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The state government has said there is no going back on the ban in six local governments in Ikeja, Eti-Osa, Lagos Island, Surulere, Apapa and Lagos Mainland Local Governments.
The ban covers nine Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) under the council including Onigbongbo, Ojodu, Ikoyi-Obalende, Iru-Victoria Island, Lagos Island East, Itire-Ikate, Coker-Aguda, Iganmu and Yaba.
Findings by Daily Trust indicated that security agencies, especially the police, have been put on red alert to implement the ban and arrest any offender.
Daily Trust reports that this is not the first time the state would be banning commercial motorcycles.
After the ban in 2020 which also included tricycles, there was a total implementation across the state but months after the authorities relaxed and the riders returned to major roads and highways in the state.
However, the state government reimposed he ban after a sound engineer was killed by some Okada riders in the Lekki area of the state last month.
The government has insisted that the present ban would be total and there is no going back on it.
It also dismissed reports of anxiety and tension, charging Lagosians to go about their normal businesses.
A Lagos resident who spoke with our correspondent said the ban would really affect his movement from the Mainland to Lagos Island due to continued closure of Eko Bridge.
“Since the closure, I have been using Okada on that axis to avoid the early morning traffic but with the new development, it would be difficult going to work now,” he said.
Ahead of the new enforcement, findings by Daily Trust indicate that most of the riders especially from the Northern parts of the country have started relocating.
While some are relocating to their towns and villages, some of them decided to relocate to Ogun State, operating around Kara, Ibafo and Mowe.
One of the riders, Umaru who hailed from Niger, confirmed to our correspondent that most of his people are relocating to the village and selling off their motorcycles.
“But some of my people are still operating around Mowe, Kara, Ibafo and Alagbole which fall under Ogun State,” he said.
He confirmed that some of his people have decided to sell their motorcycles in Ibadan.