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Breaking: LASG drives towards stakeholders’ call, declares full ban on Okada in another 4 LGAs, 6 LCDAs



…Riders, passengers arrested to face full wrath of law

…Decision well thought out based on stakeholders’ resolutions – Omotoso

By Moses Adeniyi

Following suit in line with demands from stakeholders, the Lagos State Government (LASG) has declared a full ban on the operation of motorcycles, popularly called Okada, in additional four (4) Local Government Areas (LGAs) and six (6) Local Council Development Areas (LCDA).

The LGAs and their respective LCDAs Include Kosofe Local Government – Ikosi-Isherri LCDA and Agboyi-Ketu LCDA;​ Oshodi-Isolo Local Government; ​Isolo LCDA and Ejigbo LCDA; Shomolu Local Government – Bariga LCDA; Mushin Local Government – Odi-Olowo LCDA.

The ban on these areas would form a phase II to augment an earlier order which placed ban on their operations in six (6) LGAs and nine (9) LCDAs with an enforcement which commenced in June, 2022.

Recall that stateholders including religious and traditional leaders, youth representatives, Community Development Associations, Security and Paramilitary agencies, and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) had on Tuesday in a forum held at Ikeja, the State Capital, largely called for a total ban of Okada operation in the entire 20 LGAs and LCDAs in the State.

The State’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, had mentioned that the resolutions of the stakeholders would be presented to the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, after which with critical consultations and engagement in line with the demands for inclusiveness, a declaration would be made.

Following the process, the Interministerial committe set-up to consider the subject in a press briefing on Thursday at Ikeja, the State Capital, declared that having submitted the resolutions to the Governor and all relevant consultations and engagement made, the Governor has endorsed the ban of Okada operation in additional four (4) LGAs and their respective LCDAs (6).

“The State Government in addition to the existing ban is now directing a total ban on Okada activities in four (4) new LGs and their LCDAs, effective from 1st September, 2022,” the State’s Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, told newsman.

According to him, the ban is in “a bid to further promote the Safety and Security of lives and properties in the State.”

“This decision is to further consolidate on the achievements made so far with particular reference to decline in Accident and Crime rate as well as to continue to bring sanity to our communities within the State,” he added.

He stated that “the State Government has directed the Nigeria Police Force, and the Lagos Command with all relevant stakeholders’ (i.e Army, Navy, Air force, other Security and Law enforcement formations within the State) to be complimented by the ‘Anti-Okada Squad’ that will be deployed to these new locations in a bid to stimulate seamless implementation and enforcement of the phase 2 ban in the State.”

“While the ban is in force, the public are advised to resort to alternative and sustainable means of transportation provided in the State, such as the First and Last Mile Transport Scheme, the BRT Scheme, the Lagos e-hailing taxi Scheme (Lagride) and other acceptable mode of transportation to go about their daily activities,” he said.

Reiterating that the major resolution reached at the Stakeholders forum tagged “Okada Ban: What Next” by the public was a state-wide ban on Okada Operations in the State, he said “the Ministry in conjunction with the inter-ministerial committee on Okada having critically accessed these resolutions and the challenges of Okada Operations on the Security Architecture of the State; recommended to Mr. Governor not to go back on the already laid down phase ban in a bid to sustain the gains.”

The Commissioner mentioned that motorcycle impounded will be crushed and the process will be made public, while individuals (both riders and passengers alike) “arrested will be made to face the full wrath of the law in line with the provision of Section 46, sub-section 1, 2 & 3 of the Transport Sector Reform Law (TSRL), 2018.”

He implored “the general public to join hands together with the State Government by complying with the decision of the Government geared towards combating the monster that Okada operation has created, so that sanity can return to our State.”

According to him, the State Government having received and considered empirical reports from the Ministry of Health, Lagos State Health Service Commission and the Lagos State Police Command on downward slide in accident and crime rates in order to analyse the impact of the ban on Safety and Security before and during the ban within the affected areas of the State, made the decision to extend the ban to other areas.

Analysis of the data, he said, revealed report from LASTMA confirms that accident rate as it relates to Commercial motorcycles has reduce by 4%; (i.e 68 accident cases was recorded in June, 2022 as against 74 recorded in May);

“Report for Ministry of Health confirms that accident rate as it relates to Commercial motorcycles has reduced 63.5% in all general hospital across the State (i.e 176 accident cases were reported in June as against 277 recorded cases in May).

“It is also important to mention that the restricted corridors (i.e Apapa, Lagos Island, Yaba, Surulere, Ikeja) recorded a significantly low accident reports which indicates that the restriction is achieving its objectives (i.e accident record in June is 18 as against 91 recorded in May),” he stated.

“Report from Commissioner of Police confirms as follows: Crime Rate i. 14 crime cases were recorded in June as against 20 in May; ii. Two crime cases as at 15th July as against 14 in June.

“Accident Rate i. 23 accident cases were recorded in June as against 37;
ii. Two cases of accident as at 15th July as against 23 in June,” he added.

On the average, the data, he mentioned, shows that the operation has significant gains and compliance rate in the concerned areas as available records’ shows that crime and accident rate has reduced astronomically by 86% and 63.7% respectively within the period under review and a total of 7,500 motorcycles have been impounded and crushed accordingly, “hence, the need to sustain this achievement.”

“Based on the apparent positive impact of the ban and the resolution of the Stakeholders’ forum, Mr. Governor has approved the ban of Okada in another Four (4) LGs and their respective Five (5) LCDAs for the 2nd Phase of the total ban, in addition to the on-going ban in the Six (6) LGs and their respective LCDAs,” he said.

On the fear that the ban would render many jobless, thereby leading to resort to crimes, Oladeinde said various empowerment opportunities put in place by the State Government should be optimised by Lagosians.

“Furthermore, the State Government’s existing interventions aimed at empowering her citizens should equally be accessed as an alternative means of livelihood for the affected riders.

“These interventions are coordinated by the following MDAs: Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation (WAPA) (vocational training); Ministry of Wealth Creations and Employment (internship programmes); Office of Civic Engagement; Office of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) (Loan for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs, Lagos Economic Acceleration Programme “LEAP”); Ministry of Agriculture (Agric YES); Ministry of Education (CodeLagos Scheme) and many others,” he said.

The Commissioner said the protection of lives and properties “is a collective responsibility of all,” calling on residents to give feedbacks and complaints through hotlines ​09038208154, 09169655855, ​09034810153, 09033090826.

Speaking, the State’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, said the pronouncement was in line with the views of stakeholders, considering anxiety over recent security threats.

According to him, the ban was also justifiable, as the commercial operations of Okada do not form part of the greater Lagos journey in terms of the transportation master plan of the State.

Lagos State has been on the roll of red alert over threats of possible plans of terror attack, a signal that has informed calls on the Government to take action.

NewsDirect had reported how stakeholders have reached resolution to prevail on the Government to enforce a total ban on Okada, following wild identification of menaces of accidents and crimes, perpetrated through the means, as well as indiscriminate migration.

The State Government had in partnership with relevant stakeholders’ began the implementation and enforcement of the Governors pronouncement on the total ban of motorcycle operations in six (6) Local Governments (LGs) and the respective nine (9) Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) under them including all major bridges and highways of the State which had since taken effect from 1st June, 2022.

The ban on Okada has now become a national subject as the Federal Government is also presently considering a nationwide ban of motorcycles across the Country.


Kano Court sacks Ganduje as APC Chairman



The Kano State High Court has sacked Abdullahi Ganduje as the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The Court granted an ex parte order restraining the Ganduje from parading himself as a member of the party.

Subsequently, the court ordered that henceforth, Ganduje should desist from presiding over all affairs of the National Working Committee of the APC.

The application granted by Justice Usman Na’abba on Tuesday followed an ex parte motion filed by Dr. Ibrahim Sa’ad on behalf of two executive members of Ganduje’s ward, Dawakin-Tofa Local Government Area, the Assistant Secretary, Laminu Sani and Legal Adviser, Haladu Gwanjo (plaintiffs), who were part of the nine ward executives who suspended Ganduje on Monday.

The court directed the four parties (respondents) joined in the matter, including the APC, NWC, APC Kano State Working Committee, and Ganduje, to henceforth, maintain status quo ante belum as of April 15, 2024, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit on April 30, 2024.

Justice Na’abba, also held as prayed, stopped State Working Committee APC Kano from interfering with the legally and validly considered decision of executives of Ganduje ward, essentially on action endorsed by a two-thirds majority of the executives as provided by the party constitution.

The ex parte order read, “An order is hereby granted directing all parties in the suit APC (first), APC National Working Committee (second), Kano State Working Committee APC (third), Dr. Abdullah Umar Ganduje (fourth), to maintain status quo ante belum as of April 15, 2024.

“The order thereby restraining the first respondent (APC) from recognising the fourth respondent (Ganduje) as a member of APC and prohibiting the fourth respondent (Ganduje) from presiding over any affairs of the NWC and restraining the state Working Committee from interfering with the legally and validly decision of the ward executives of Ganduje ward.

“That the fourth respondent (Ganduje) is prohibited from parading himself as a member of APC or doing any act that may portray him or seem to be a member of APC pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.”

Nine members of the Ganduje ward proclaimed the suspension of the National Chairman of the APC over the allegation of corruption slammed on him by the Kano State Government.

The nine APC executives said they were prompted to act following a petition written by one Ja’afaru Adamu, a member of the APC from the National Chairman’s polling unit.

In the petition, Adamu complained over allegations of corruption charges against the former governor just as he urged the ward leaders to investigate the matter to redeem the dented image of the party and the implication on President Bola Tinubu’s fight against corruption.

Although the chairman and secretary of the ward failed to act on the petition filed on April 8, 2024, nine members of the executives, led by the legal adviser, acted upon the petition, a decision that led to Ganduje’s suspension.

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Ogun Assembly passes Assembly Commission Amendment bill



The Ogun House of Assembly on Wednesday passed the State House of Assembly Service Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2024.

The passage of the bill followed  presentation of the Committee’s report by the Chairman, House Committee on Establishments and Public Service Matters, Mr Babatunde Tella at plenary in Abeokuta.

Tella moved the motion for its adoption, seconded by Mr Adeyanju Adegoke and supported by all the members.

The bill was later read and adopted clause by clause before the Committee of Whole.

The Majority Leader, Mr Yusuf Sheriff, moved the motion for the third reading of the bill, seconded by the Minority Leader, Mr Lukmon Adeleye and supported by the Whole House through a unanimous voice vote.

Consequently, the Deputy Clerk of the House, Mrs Funmilayo Adeyemi, took the third reading of the bill before the lawmakers.

The Speaker, Mr Oludaisi Elemide, directed that the clean copy of the bill be forwarded to Gov. Dapo Abiodun for his assent.

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Abuja court gives EFCC go-ahead to arrest ex-Kogi Governor, Yahaya Bello



A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, ordered that a warrant be issued to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for immediate arrest of former Governor of Kogi, Alhaji Yahaya Bello.

Justice Emeka Nwite, in a ruling on EFCC’s ex-parte motion, held that after listening to the submission of commission’s counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, SAN, and reading the affidavit in support of the motion, including the exhibits and written address, he was inclined to grant the application.

It was earlier reported that a High Court sitting in Lokoja on Wednesday, restrained the EFCC from arresting, detaining and prosecuting Bello

Justice I.A Jamil, who gave the order in a two-hour judgment delivered in suit no HCL/68/M/2020, held that infringing on Bello’s “fundamental human rights is null and void.”

The judge, who dismissed the commission’s application challenging the jurisdiction of the court, said: “By this order, the EFCC is hereby restrained from arresting, detaining and prosecuting the applicant.

“This is a definite order following the earlier interim injunction given.”

However, in a ruling delivered by Justice Nwite on Wednesday, the judge ordered that a warrant be issued to the commission for Bello’s immediate arrest.

He also directed that the former governor be produced before the court on April 18 for arraignment.

“It is hereby ordered as follows:

“That an order of this honourable court is hereby made directing and/or issuing a warrant for the immediate arrest of the defendant for the purpose of bringing him before this honourable court for arraignment.

“That case is adjourned to 18th day of April, 2024 for arraignment,” he declared.

NAN reports that the EFCC, in the motion ex-parte marked: FHC/ABJ/CR/98/2024 dated April 16 and filed April 17, sought six orders.

These include “an order granting leave to the complainant/applicant to effect service of the charge together with the proof of evidence on the defendant by substituted means to wit; by pasting the charge at the last known address of the defendant within the jurisdiction of this honourable court being: 9, Benghazi Street, Wuse Zone 4, Abuja.

“An order directing and/or issuing an arrest warrant for the immediate arrest of the defendant for the purpose of bringing him before this honourable court for arraignment.”

In the alternative, the anti-graft agency sought an order issuing and directing the publishing of a public summons requiring/ commanding the defendant to appear before the court on a named date, among others.

The conflicting orders came after the EFCC had appealed against the initial order, and the appeal was scheduled for hearing on April 22 in Appeal No: CA/ABJ/CV/175/2024 between EFCC and Alhaji Yahaya Bello.

The Yahaya Bello Media Office had, in a statement signed by Onogwu Mohammed, alerted the nation to a siege on the former Governor’s Abuja residence.

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