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Okada ban: We’ll not back down, says Sanwo-Olu

Ayodele Olalere

Lagos state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Tuesday insisted the state government will not reverse its decision on the ban of commercial motorcycles ans tricycles on major roads in the state.

There have been wide criticism from Lagosians since the ban came into effect on February 1 as commuters now treks long distance to their various destinations.

However, while launching eight new boats in addition to the six existing ones by Lagos Ferry Services, LAGFERRY, at the Badore-Ajah boat terminal, to cushion the effects of the ban, governor Sanwo-Olu said in spite of criticism, the state government will not compromise the security and safety of lives of Lagosians.

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He maintained he will sustain the ban, adding as a responsible government , his administration will not fold its arms and allow security breach in the state.

“Let me tell you about the ban which we just enforced. We will sustain the ban on okadas and tricycles, mainly because of security and safety reasons. Security and safety of citizens is paramount to any government. As a responsible government, we will not fold our arms and allow any security breach in the state.

“We will continue to ensure the safety of our people on all fronts. There have been reports of serious security breaches and safety concerns in areas where these operators ply. We had to respond to these concerns because life and safety matters to this government, ” Sanwo-Olu said.

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Sanwo-Olu said the government attached more importance to the life of its citizens and will do everything within its powers to bring succour to them.

“Government will always place a high premium on the life of Its citizens and as a responsible one, we will always do everything within our powers to bring succour to them. We have made available additional 65 buses to be deployed to various routes to cushion the effect of the inconveniences that may be experienced for now.

“We also intend to bring in additional buses which will further help cushion the effect of the current challenges. Government will do everything within its powers to ensure that Lagosians get the best. Be that as it may, as I have said, security and safety remain paramount in our plans for our people,” he said.

He promised more developmental programmes in other Local Government and Local Council Development Areas, such as Alimosho, Ajeromi, Ojo, Oto-Awori Iba, Ifako-Ijaye, Ojokoro, Mushin, Oshodi and Isolo.

“There are other local governments which are not affected by this ban, as it is not a total or outright ban, but a restriction to certain areas in the state. Alimosho is a very big local government that can be exploited by these operators. Ifako-Ijaye is yet another which is open for business. Places such as Ojo, Otto and Iba are there for exploitation and operation by the operators.”

According to him, the operators should look for ways to tailor their operations within and around these places rather than focus on the restricted areas as government was not in any way thinking of rescinding Its decision anytime soon.

The governor promised that the number of boats will be increased to 30 by the end of the year.