Lagos State government has extended invitations to some journalists to witness the crushing of motorcycles seized in the course of enforcing the restriction of commercial motorcycles popularly known as Okadas in some areas and highways beginning from June 1.
The venue of the exercise is the “Task Force Ground, Alausa Ikeja”.
However monitoring of the enforcement revealed that at Obalende, part of Eti-Osa Local Government Area, one of the Council Areas where Okada activities had been proscribed, men of the Nigeria Police force were seen standing in clusters at Okada convergence points.
From the front of P & T, to the foot of the Obalende flyover bridge and other key areas serving as unofficial parks for riders, no Okada was sighted as police officers stood in groups ready to enforce compliance.
There was also total compliance at Ojuelegba bus stop, Shitta bus stop and other major areas in Surulere Local Government, where Okada riders usually park in groups to scout for passengers.
Radio Nigeria reported that despite rumours of protests and alleged violence against the ban previously circulated on social media prior to today’s commencement of the
proscription, so far, there has been peace as many residents of Lagos go about their lawful businesses.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State had, on May 18, announced a total ban on the operations of okada in six local government areas in the state with effect from June 1.
The Lagos State Police Command said yesterday that 140 motorcycles were seized and 16 passengers and riders arrested as enforcement of the ban on the operation of okada riders in the state commenced.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Benjamin Hundeyin, stated that 94 of the motorcycles were impounded by the police, while others were seized by men of the Lagos State Environmental Sanitation Enforcement Agency.
“There was over 90 per cent compliance, but some motorcyclists still came out and we arrested and charged them to a mobile court.
“Sixteen passengers and motorcyclists were arrested; the majority of the motorcyclists did not carry passengers and some of the motorcyclists abandoned their motorcycles after sighting policemen,” he added.