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Okada Riders Vs Task Force: We Won’t Be Deterred — Lagos Govt

After the Tuesday clash between commercial motorcyclists popularly known as Okada and officials of the Lagos State Taskforce at the Second Rainbow Bus Stop, along Apapa Oshodi Expressway, Lagos, there was another clash, yesterday, at Dopemu and Ikeja Along Bus Stops along the Agege Motor Road.

Just like the Tuesday clash, yesterday’s clash created tension in the area as the commercial motorcyclists set bonfires on the road resulting in a heavy traffic jam.

It was gathered that the task force officers stormed the area, yesterday morning, to enforce the state traffic law but, as soon as the personnel arrived Ikeja-Along in their operational vehicles, the commercial motorcyclists had strategised before their arrival.

A commercial motorcycle operator, Ibrahim Sarafadeen, told Vanguard that some of his colleagues from Amuwo-Odofin joined by miscreants had liaised with others in Ikeja, while those from Iyana-Ipaja also called for reinforcement from Sango\Tollgate.

But as soon as the personnel arrived Ikeja-Along, the riders did not give them any breathing space.

The riders were said to have taken over the road, made a bonfire and attacked the personnel with pebbles, sticks, broken bottles and other dangerous weapons.

Also, they were said to have attempted to set the operational vehicles ablaze but for the fact that the personnel took off on sensing danger. However, the defiant riders were said to have launched a chase after the personnel.

The aftermath of the attack saw the personnel retreating to their operational vehicles which zoomed off immediately. A food vendor at Dopemu, Olubunmi Doyin, who decried the clash, said: “We were going about our daily activities when the task force officers parked their vehicles at one corner and started arresting okada riders.

“This is not the first confrontation between commercial motorcycle operators and taskforce officials in this area, but Wednesday’s confrontation was something else as the okada men threw stones at the officers while the officers kept shooting sporadically into the air.

They also used teargas on the okada men. “You know the Ikeja-Along route is one of the roads where okada has been banned.

As usual, task force officers early this morning (Wednesday) stationed their trucks at Dopemu/Ikeja Along and started impounding erring motorcyclists’ bikes and arresting okada men.

“The okada riders mobilised themselves to resist the officers and they started shooting sporadically not minding who their bullets would hit.

We had to leave our goods and ran for safety when we noticed that it was getting tensed up.”

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