4th February, 2013
Governor Babatunde Fashola has disowned the Commissioner for Transportation, Kayode Opeifa for arrogating to himself the power to grant approval before anyone can purchase the 200cc capacity motorcycle.
Ever since the road traffic law was passed by the governor, Opeifa had bluntly told Lagosians that no one could purchase the 200cc machine without first getting approval from his office, saying that anyone who purchased the machine without seeking approval did so at his own risk.
Some individuals and corporate bodies that purchased the 200cc motorcycles wrote to Opeifa seeking approval but he never granted the approval because they did not seek approval first before buying the motorcycles.
Many newspaper firms like National Mirror, Business Day, P.M.NEWS, The Punch, among others have been at the mercy of Opeifa who refused to grant them approval even after they had purchased some 200cc motorcycles to dispatch their newspapers.
For instance, P.M.NEWS purchased three 200cc motorcycles around October, 2012 and wrote to Opeifa for approval to put the bikes into use, but till this moment, the commissioner has not granted the approval.
This obnoxious approval is almost killing the businesses of those in the newspaper industry and courier companies as no one has yet got approval from the commissioner, who claims to be carrying out one of the provisions of the law.
However, Fashola frowned at Opeifa’s unbecoming attitude, wondering who arrogated to him the power to grant approval before anyone could purchase the 200cc motorcycles.
The commissioner may have been embarrassed when Fashola denounced such approval order, saying it was contrary to the traffic law and ordered Opeifa to stop it immediately.
Speaking during a tour of projects in Badagry area of Lagos, southwest Nigeria, Fashola rebuked Opeifa sharply, saying that, “first of all, when you have a 200cc motorcycle, as your own form of transport, not public transportation; if you have that, you can ride on any road in Lagos.”
“You don’t need any permission, you don’t need any exemption, if you are running courier business, once you have a 200cc, you go to the motor registry, you license it, get your plate number, just as you will license any vehicle, that is all you need at least for Lagos State Government.
“I don’t know about the regulation for courier business because it’s not my responsibility; but as for plying my road, once you meet that, you don’t need any exemption or permit from anybody whether in the Ministry of Transportation and I’ve told the Commissioner for Transportation that he must make further clarification. No exemption is needed once you have a 200cc,” he stated.