The Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat has reaffirmed that the State Government will not reconsider its decision on its ban of motorcycles and tricycles from major roads to secure lives and reduce vices in the state.
The Deputy Governor noted “the essence of this ban is to ensure that the lives of citizens that resides in Lagos is secured. It is not to punish anybody or restrict people from doing certain jobs but the reality is that people are dying, the security of our children is being compromised and the government must act”.
He stated this last night during his appearance on “Politics Today’’, a programme on Channels Television, explained that the government made this decision after evaluating the rate of crime and accidents recorded in the state.
Hamzat averred that the ban was in accordance with the Lagos State Transport Reform Law of 2012. He stated that “it is a law that has been in existence since 2012, it was revised by the past administration in 2018. It is a law that has been there for 9-10 years now’.
He further explained that the law says that Okadas and Keke Napeps are restricted from plying major highways, certain roads and all bridges.
He stated that “what this administration is doing is just to implement the law that the House of Assembly passed which must have been vigorously scrutinized”.
Also the state government’s law was revisited due to the scary figures of fatal accidents in the state, as against the claims that the ban was targeted at anyone or group saying that “the Sanwo-Olu’s Administration was only implementing existing laws of the state”.
He further stated that ‘we have 27 general hospitals in Lagos and close to 3000 private hospitals, using the statics of just the general hospitals alone, on the an average, of 28 deaths related to okada are recorded monthly. It is therefore important as a government to act.
He noted that since implementation of the ban of Okadas and Tricycles by the government, the rate of accidents on Lagos roads has significantly reduced.
The Deputy Governor decried that okada and keke napep were used as tools for crime such as theft, drug trafficking and vices by some criminal elements. He stated that “these modes of transportation are becoming avenue to commit crimes and the government cannot wait until major disasters happen before the government acts”.
While berating the level of social vice perpetuated in the society through the motorcycles, the deputy governor noted that ‘we have now found out that the tricycles and motorcycles are now the vehicles for transporting drugs even to schools. The government must ensure that the security of lives and the prosperity of our children must be protected and cannot be ignored.’
He stressed that attacks on citizens at the major cities was becoming alarming and there was an urgent need for the government to act. He stated that ‘we get calls through our emergency control centers as early as 6:00am from people going to work been robbed and harassed through motorcycle’.
He stated that motorcycles and tricycles has a huge impact on the economy of the state, as artisans no longer exist in Nigeria. He noted that if you want to lay tiles people are being brought in from the neighboring countries.
He noted that the state government has made provision for 17 skill acquisition centres, 5 technical schools and you will be lucky to get people to attend. He further stressed that several efforts have been put in place by the government to equip the people through partnering with Organisations such as Elizade Motors to teach people on how to do mechanical works.
Dr. Hamzat stated that the Lagos State Government has provided 65 BRT buses and 14 ferries in our waterways for those areas with water as alternatives.
He announced that the state government has embarked on a BRT bus lane from Bolade Oshodi to Katanguwa Abule Egba which is about 14-15kms will be completed very soon.
The Deputy Governor also disclaimed that the Lagos State Government endorsed private investors to operate motorcycling business in the State, the Deputy Governor stated that “anybody can pay a courtesy visit to the Governor or Government as he is for the people. They actually came, but that is not an endorsement, they came to discuss a business and were told that there is a law regulating against Okada in Lagos”.