Okada ban: Hundreds of port users stranded, ride bicycles, as Okada riders desert Apapa

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By Steve Agbota

Hundreds of port users were stranded and left with no choice than to trek kilometers from Apapa to Tin Can Island Ports amongst other long distance in order to meet up with their business demands.

There was a scarcity of bikes following the enforcement of Okada ban in Lagos by security agencies as directed by the Lagos State Government.

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A visit to the two seaports in Lagos by our reporter seen operatives of the Nigeria Police Force patrolling the two ports as motorcyclists flouting the new policy were running to escape from the impeding seizure that awaits their bikes if they are caught.

Recall that the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu announced the banning of motorcycle operations in six different Local Government Areas of the State which are, Ikeja, Surulere, Eti-Osa, Lagos Mainland, Lagos Island, and Apapa.

During a walk from Apapa to Tin Can Island Port, However, some clearing agents resolve to ride bicycles to get to their distanced destinations while some trekked from Apapa to PTML even as all major parks in the seaport usually occupied by motorcyclists were deserted and empty.

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Speaking with Daily Sun, clearing agent, Mamood Adegoke said that the ban was a good step as it will reduce the traffic along the ports corridor, saying that the Okada riders constitute to the Apapa gridlock.

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He said there are over 12,000 Okada riders in Apapa with majority of them do not have registered plate numbers, it is always difficult to identify who is who when the commit any crime.

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However, he urged Lagos State Government to provide alternative means of transportation around the port corridors in order to ease the movement of ports users.

A freight forwarder, Abubakar Shehu commended the Lagos State Government for initiating the ban idea, however, advised that alternatives like tricycles should made available to ease activities that involve covering long distances in the port.

“I will applaud the Lagos State for bringing this idea. This is because major atrocities in the state are traceable to the okada riders. However, I’m in 60s, its difficult and hard for me to cover much distance. Tricycles known as Maruwa should be provided to serve as an alternative for motocycles,” he said.

Meanwhile, Muktar Yusuf, bemoaned the stress he passed through while journeying from Marine bridge to Tin Can Island Port first gate.

“I trekked from Marine bridge to Tin Can this morning. Lagos State Government should gives alternatives. This is unusual of me. I can’t even imagine trekking this long distance.” he added.

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