LAGOS – Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, said Wednesday it would ban motorcycle taxis from operating in most traffic-involved cities, removing a popular mode of transportation for residents.
Lagos State Governor Babajide Sano-olu said the ban, second in just two years, would take effect in June, adding that motorbikes that provide taxi services, locally known as “Okadas”, were unsafe.
It was not immediately clear if the ban would include delivery motorcycles, but would include ride-hailing start-ups like Oride, Gokada and Max.ng, which seek to capitalize on the city’s population of just over 20 million. To expand their business.
Companies could not be immediately reached for comment.
Traffic jams are part of everyday life in Lagos, where many residents use motorbikes to cross traffic, but without the slightest emphasis on road and safety regulations.
“Every day we lose our lives, there are always preventable accidents and the riders are not obeying our traffic laws,” said Sano-Olu.
“The situation has led to a complete breakdown of law and order. The ban is meant to remain in place and we will not tolerate any weaknesses in enforcement, “a news briefing said.
Similar restrictions imposed in February 2020 became obsolete due to lack of enforcement.
Motorcycle taxis will be banned from the area covering 40 bridges and flyovers and the business districts of Victoria Island and Lagos Island, Apapa, where the primary port is located and Ikeja International Airport.
“How do I survive without a job? We’ll see if it’s different (from last time), “said Okada driver Victor Abra as his motorcycle’s tires were being fixed in a roadside garage on Victoria Island. (Reporting by McDonald Digirutway; Editing by Alexander Smith)