The Lagos State Government of Friday explained that Okada is not part of the development policy of the state. The government decried that youths have abandoned enduring trades to go into Okada operations.

The Lagos State government highlighted why Gokada, O’Pay and other branded Okada operators were affected in the ban on okada in the state.

The government stated that they also been found to be part of the problem. “The truth is that Okada, no matter what fanciful name it’s called, is not part of the Greater Lagos journey on which we have embarked. Our youths no longer learn the trades we used to be proud of – tailoring, bricklaying, printing, painting and others. Now, we get artisans from neighbouring countries. Okada is not an enduring trade,” the government declared.

The government’s ban on okada and tricycle (keke) in Lagos takes effect from this Saturday.

The state government, however, refuted any fear of joblessness, noting that the government has programmes for the unemployed. “The Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) is very active, helping many to set up their businesses with cheap funds.

“The Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has also been doing so much training young women in various trades and giving them some money to set up. Civic Engagement has empowered many to start small scale businesses,” the State Government declared.

The government maintained that okada has been used in robbery operations in recent times ion the state, adding that the picture is horrible, bloody and scary. It insisted that the government will not stand by and watch the bloody encounters to continue. “Besides, the security of lives of Lagosians are of paramount interest to the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration. This is why it is moving to stop this fast slide into lawlessness,” it was declared.

Gokada and O’Pay operators on Friday went on mass protest to the Government House, Ikeja, urging the Lagos State government to look into their plight on the okada ban in the state. They expressed concerns of job loss.