15th June, 2010
The Lagos State Government on Monday banned the use of commercial motorcycles (Okada) for the carrying of pregnant women, with effect from July 1.
The operators have also been barred from carrying pupils and women with babies strapped to their backs.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Mr. Kayode Opeifa, announced this in a statement made available to newsmen in Ikeja.
The statement was signed by Mr. Sina Thorpe, spokesman for the Ministry of Transportation.
Opeifa explained that the ban was part of the new traffic laws and regulations that would guide the operations of commercial motorcyclists.
The special adviser said that the enforcement of the law became necessary as the government was keen on protecting lives of the citizens.
“Many lives who could contribute meaningfully to the development of the state and the nation are being lost through the menace of Okada operators on our roads,â€™â€™ he said.
Opeifa advised both the riders and the passengers to wear crash helmets while all motorcycle operators must possess ridersâ€™ cards.
He warned that no Okada operator should carry more than a passenger at a time or carry a passenger with load or ply the expressway.
The regulations banned those under 18 years from riding motorcycles.
Okada operators are also barred from fixing vehicle horns on their motorcycles, as well as the mounting of musical equipment on them.
Opeifa, however, implored motorcycle operators to obey traffic rules and regulations, such as the red traffic signal lights and zebra crossings.
“They (motorcyclists) must not ride against the flow of traffic, not park on the kerbs, medians or pedestrian walkways,â€™â€™ he warned.
He also implored the motorcycle operators to ensure compliance with the time restriction order for their business operation.
According to him, all motorcycle operators within Ikoyi, Victoria Island and Ikeja should close by 8 p.m. while those operating elsewhere in the state should end their operations by 10 p.m.
Opeifa said that officials of LASTMA, FRSC, Traffic Task Force, the Nigerian Police and other law enforcement agents had been directed to ensure strict compliance.