August 3, 2022

Civil War veteran, Adoke cautions FG over bid to outlaw commercial motorcycles

Nigeria’s civil war veteran and elder statesman, Alhaji Ahmed Adoke has cautioned the Federal Government over plans to slam a ban on the use of commercial motorcycles as means of transportation in the country.

Adoke, a human rights activist on Thursday in Abuja explained that the reason adduced by the Federal Government to justify the planned ban of commercial motorcycles popularly known as ‘Okada’ nationwide is not only ridiculous but an admission of failure that government has no solution to insecurity challenges.

In a statement issued to Journalists, Adoke warned the Federal Government not to actualize the planned ban on Okada Riders on the ground that the multiple negative effects would be too much for the nation to bear.

He said that the failure of the Federal Government to provide jobs for the teaming University graduates has forced them to opt for the job of commercial motorcycles adding that any attempts to enforce the ban could spell doom for the nation.

For such a ban to be meaningful and acceptable, the elder statesman insisted that government must first find alternative means of livelihood for the millions of Nigerian youths who have taken to Okada riding to keep their lives together.

Similarly, he canvassed that other visible means of transportation must be provided for the market men and women as well as civil servants to enable them keep up with the realities of the present economic hardships.

Adoke said using insurgency, banditry and terrorism as grounds and reasons to impose a ban on the use of motorcycles as a means of transportation will not be acceptable to Nigerians.

He said that the Federal Government must come out in clear terms to explain to Nigerians how Okada riders should be held responsible for insurgency, banditry and terrorism when the operators are well known in the communities and even operate under government registered associations.

Adoke’s statement read in part “Last Friday, 22nd July 2022, Nigerian Dailies and other media outfits were awash with the news that the Federal Government of Nigeria was considering banning the use/distribution of Motorcycles, as well as mining activities in the country.

“The news followed the press statement issued by the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, who briefed the press on the outcome of the National Security Council meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari during the week.

“The move according to the minister was one of the resolutions reached at the meeting.

“It is the belief of the National Security Council that both decisions, when implemented will help to check the menace of terrorists, Boko Haram and Bandits among others.

“To several Nigerians, the decision to ban the use of motorcycles in the country is not only ridiculous but an open admission that government lacks a solution to the security challenges in the country.

“It is very clear that the use of motorcycles by terrorists, bandits or Boko Haram to the scene of operation falls into the semi-final stage of their operations. Meaning that they can be checked at the early stage before execution if the intelligence unit of the nation’s security outfit is effectively utilized.

“Several questions that linger in the minds of Nigerians are; will there be no other means of transportation available to the terrorists?

” Is it not possible that terrorists can even strike at their target without the use of any modern means of transportation?

“Again, weighing the economic implication of the federal government’s decision on the ban on motorcycles, there is no denying the fact that across the nation today, the use of motorcycles for commercial purposes has become a major source of employment and livelihood for needy Nigerians.

“Thus, throwing these people into the unemployment market would pose a bigger security threat to the country.

”Is it not also baffling that the government is in the knowledge of the base or hide-outs of the criminals and yet the government cannot do anything.

“Government or its agents sometimes go into negotiation with the terrorists, meaning that government cannot deny knowledge of where the terrorists are hiding.

“For instance, terrorists behind the Kaduna train attack released some captives on two different occasions after the payment of heavy ransom. Is it not cowardice that Nigerian Security could not locate where the rest captives are kept in the bush for their release?

“Is it not in this country that terrorists or bandits are photographed with their captives, release video threats to the helpless and yet the federal government failed to act to rescue her citizens?

“Motorcycle is a veritable means of transport to average Nigerians and below and as government cannot just decide to impose a ban on its use without weighing the consequences, especially on those to be rendered jobless.

It is incomprehensible to listen to President Muhammadu Buhari that he is eager to leave office, meaning that he is no longer keen or has become helpless in the affairs of Nigeria.

Then, let President Buhari resign and hand over to his vice. Undoubtedly, Nigerians are tired of the rampant cases of killings by terrorists, bandits and Boko Haram.

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