By Dayo Johnson
AKURE—IN a move aimed at curbing criminal activities along the Benin- Ore expressway, the Ondo State government, yesterday, banned commercial motorcycles popularly known as okada operating along the route.
Ondo State Information and Orientation Commissioner, Mr. Donald Ojogo, in a statement in Akure, said that the ban was with immediate effect.
Ojogo said that the state government was disturbed by the criminal activities taking place along the route and needed to stem it forthwith.
The statement reads: “Government has observed with serious concern, the activities of some unscrupulous elements, who have hidden under the guise of engaging in motorcycle business, popularly known as okada, to perpetrate crime on the Ofosu-Ajebamidele route along the Ore Expressway.
“Disturbed by the activities of these criminal elements which include armed robbery, kidnapping, their mode of operations as well as the heightening cases of loss of lives, the Ondo State Government has placed a total ban on commercial motorcycles (okada) along the entire stretch of the route in question.
“This action is with immediate effect and shall suffice until further notice.
“By this development, all activities of commercial motorcyclists are henceforth, restricted to internal confines of Ore town and other communities in the area. Security agencies, especially the Nigeria Police, are consequently directed to apprehend forthwith, anyone who flouts this restriction order.”
Ojogo appealed “to the general public to cooperate with security agencies in the enforcement of this action in order to stem the growing rate of criminal activities along the area.”