The Lagos State Government, on Thursday, November 19, 2020, read the riot act to motorcycle and tricycle operators, following the flagrant violation of the traffic laws and other anomalies on its roads.
This statement by the state government is coming after the recent clash between the Lagos State Task Force on Environment and Special Offences and okada riders in some parts of Lagos.
The warning was issued by the Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr Frederic Oladeinde, on Thursday, November 19, 2020, during a press conference on traffic rules violation, in Alausa, Ikeja.
According to Oladeinde, the state government was displeased at the non-compliance with the Transport Sector Reform Law (TSRL) 2018 which restricts the operations of commercial motorcycle riders, otherwise known as okada, and driving against traffic, known as one-way driving.
He noted that the restriction on them from plying 10 major highways, 40 bridges and roads within 6 local governments, and 9 local council development areas (LCDA) in the state was still in force.
While stressing the need for sanity on the roads within Lagos, Oladeinde said failure to comply with the law would attract sanctions as stipulated in the Transport Sector Reform Law 2018.
He also urged the media to do more by enlightening drivers on the dangers of one-way driving and said the time was up for traffic offenders.
He said, “Obedience to the law is paramount if we must build a state of our dreams. We all have joint responsibilities to make the state work for all.
“We hereby direct all law enforcement agencies, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Vehicle Inspection Service (VIS), Taskforce and the Nigerian Police to immediately and continuously embark on enforcement on all restricted routes.’’
Also speaking, the representative of the Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN), Mr Ayinde Runmokun, said that most erring riders were alien to the union, and the union was concerned about flagrant disregard of the law by some motorists and riders.
The Deputy Chairman of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Alhaji Sulyman Ojora, during the press conference, assured Lagos State Government of the support and cooperation of the union in ensuring that traffic offenders are brought to book.
The Commissioner noted that all commercial transport operators must carry out their daily activities within the approved routes in Lagos State, adding that any motorist caught driving against traffic would face the maximum penalty and also be charged to the court of law, with penalties ranging from N20,000 to 3-months imprisonment.
He said, “In line with this administration’s plan to build Lagos that works for all, we are determined to continue to engage with the various transport unions and associations of tricycle and okada operators.
“In spite of all the efforts of Mr Governor to reform our transport sector, it is therefore disheartening to note a lot of our people are still going against the extant law of the state on transport operation and safe driving on our roads and in our communities to ensure their members cooperate with us in the process of ensuring public safety by abiding with the TSRL 2018 at all time.
“With the upsurge in the number of commercial motorcycle operators, we shall intensify our enforcement strategy. This we intend to carry out along with the various transport union leaders. We will set up a joint enforcement team to ensure that our roads are sanitized from the menace of okada riders.’’
Also speaking, the Special Adviser on Transportation to Governor Sanwo-Olu, Hon. Oluwatoyin Fayinka implored all road users especially commercial transport operators to be law-abiding. He said that these operators do not only violate the provisions of the Transport Sector Reform Law of Lagos State, 2018 with restriction of areas of operations but perpetuate crime using their motorcycles.’’
LASG READS RIOT ACT TO MOTORCYCLES, TRICYCLE OPERATORS
….Says restriction on Okada riders from plying bridges, major highways still in force
…Traffic offenders will face the maximum penalty, says Transport Commissioner #ForAGreaterLagos #rebuildlagos pic.twitter.com/TlnaS5ooxR
— Gbenga Omotoso (@gbenga_omo) November 19, 2020