One week after InsideMainland reported the cries of Ogba motorcycle riders popularly known as ‘Okada’ and the treatment meted out to them by officials of the Lagos State Taskforce. The latter have once again raided the Okada riders today, Tuesday, November 7, 2017.
The Taskforce officials in the early hours of today raided Okada riders plying the Ogba, Haruna, Obawole routes in the Ojodu and Ifako Ijaiye axes of Lagos Mainland where over 50 motorcycles were impounded.
According to one of the riders, the raid by the law enforcement agency has previously occurred within the past two weeks. “This is the third time in two weeks that they would come here to pack our okada. It is becoming too much for us to bear because we don’t have another job apart from this,” the rider said.
He continued that: “The Taskforce were led by a woman this morning and they raided okada riders from Ogba and Haruna corridors. She was followed by wicked looking officers who were ready to hurt anyone who stops them from taking the motorcycles. We need the taskforce to stop this raiding.”
Another source told our correspondent that Okada riders who were not plying restricted routes were also affected during the raid. “The Taskforce came to Haruna to raid too. This area is not part of the restricted corners and we have never had issues with them. They came in a flash and took okadas from unsuspecting riders. Only a few who were alert survived the raid.”
Meanwhile, the aggrieved riders are hinting at resisting arrest or seizing of their motorcycles by the law enforcement agents when next they visit the area.
“We have to put an end to this,” the visibly angry Okada rider said.
“Police come at intervals to arrest and request for N5,000 before releasing the Okada to us. The next minute, Taskforce officers too will come to raid. We don’t have another job apart from this (okada) one. How do we feed our families if after the okada that we bought on hire-purchase is seized by the Taskforce,” the rider added.
Meanwhile, some of the riders disclosed that the seized motorcycles are often resold by the Taskforce officials to unsuspecting buyers at unbelievable rates.
Recall that InsideMainland earlier reported the unfair treatment of Okada riders plying the Ogba to Obawole and Ogba to Fagba routes by security agents to the Lagos State Government (LASG) to help reduce the incidences.
At that time, the riders said they have been constantly harrassed by Taskforce Operatives from Oshodi district, Lagos Mainland. However, efforts to reach the spokesperson of the Lagos State Taskforce and Special Offences Enforcement Unit, Mr. Adebayo Taofeeq for comments at press time proved futile.