Kaduna: Banned motorcyclists dare El-Rufai, give condition to quit Okada business

Kaduna: Banned motorcyclists dare El-Rufai, give condition to quit Okada business

Kaduna: Banned motorcyclists dare El-Rufai, give condition to quit Okada business

 

Motorcycle riders, popularly known as Okada, in Kaduna, on Friday, vowed to remain in business until the state government arrests and forcefully collects the last Okada rider’s motorcycle in the state.

The Kaduna State House of Assembly had on May 2, 2014 during era of former Governor, Mukhtar Ramalan Yero passed and signed into law, an order banning the operation of commercial motorcycles in Zaria and Kafanchan towns, including other suburbs of the state, citing insecurity as the main reason.

 

But Okada riders’ union then, code named; Amalgamated Commercial Motorcycle Owners and Riders Association of Nigeria (ACOMORON), Kaduna State chapter Secretary general, Malam Nasiru Mohammed pleaded with the state government under the leadership of Alhaji Ramalan Yero to shelve the idea, adding that, going ahead to sign the law without adequate alternative was insensitive on the part of the government.

 

He then called for more palliatives to cushion the effect of job losses for the okada riders which would enable them cater for their families and personal needs.

 

Since then, motorcyclists have continued with their businesses, while government officials, businessmen and members of the public have continued to patronised them as the easiest and effective means of transport in the State.

Again, on September 29, 2021, Kaduna Government under the leadership of Malam Nasir El-rufai banned the use of motorcycles and restricted tricycles’ movement.

 

Kaduna state Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr. Samuel Aruwan who announced the ban in a statement said it was because of security threat.

Following the ban, security operatives were instructed to arrest, seize and confiscate any motorcycles that defies government directives, just as motorcylists have continued to operate side by side, especially in the suburbs just to make ends meet.

 

The Kaduna state police command through Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Mohammed Jalige told DAILY POST that all arrested and ceased motorcycles would be arraigned and charged before a competent court of jurisdiction.

 

But motorcylists are not deterred as theyhave ignored the order and seizure of their motorcycles by security operatives. Some other motorcylists have continued with their normal business of riding their motorcycles, but not within Kaduna city.

They keep riding their Motorcycles within Kaduna suburbs such as Kakuri, Trikania, Sabon Tasha, zaruwa, Kajuru, Kasuwan Magani, Maraban, Angwar tanke, Goni Gora, romi among others to sustain and fetch food for their families.

 

While many of them blamed the state government for their inability to provide food for their families due to incessant harassment and seizure of their motorcycles, others who could not hold their tears narrated how Kaduna Government sacked them, refused to pay their entitlements, and subjected them to poverty, hunger and humiliation.

Mr. John Auta who said he had worked with Kaduna Textiles Limited ( a Textile Company owed by the 19 state government) for 28 years before it collapsed in 2004 said, the company has not paid his entitlement.

According to him, the company has enough money, assets to sell and pay off their liabilities, but the 19 owner state governors could not come into agreement to pay them.

 

” I worked in KTL, spending almost half of my lifetime with the textile company, but my gratuity and other entitlements were not paid. As at the time the company closed in 2004, it owed workers 12 months unpaid salaries.”

 

He said during Kaduna governorship campaign in 2015, Mr. El-rufai promised to revive all textile companies in Kaduna, provide jobs opportunity.

 

According to him, he could not train any of his seven children in school as the motorcycle he rides could not fetch him enough money.

Also in an interview with DAILY POST, Mr. Danladi Amita, popularly called Ambassador by other motorcylists, said he was sacked by the state government in 2017 after the competence test introduced by Governor Nasir El-rufai.

” I taught in primary school for 29 years when in 2017, the state government introduced competence test. The government sacked all of us who could not get certain percentages he demanded. Since then, we have been waiting for the payment of our entitlement, but nothing. Our end well scheme ( money saved by individual teachers to be given to him after retirement) was not paid. I cannot feed my children. Due to compounded problems, resulting to unpaid benefits, I developed internal sickness. I use this Motorcycle to at least fetch for food.

He blamed the Kaduna State Government for his pains and hunger, adding that if the state government had paid him all his entitlements, he would have found something tangible to do.

 

He said over 10, 000 teachers sacked during the competence test were not paid, as most of them resorted to Okada as a means of livelihood.

 

He pleaded with the Kaduna state government, Governor Nasir El-rufai to urgently pay their terminal benefits, or provide a means of livelihood for them to get off road