14 November 2012

Nigeria: Okada Ban - JAF Plans Another Mass Action

Photo: Bunmi Azeez/Vanguard
Okada riders.

Following the recent ban of commercial motorcycle, popularly known as okada by Lagos State Government, the Joint Action Front (JAF), has organised a symposium to revive the action.

Speaking at the event, which also addressed the issues of fuel, flood, food and security among others, the Chairman of JAF, Mr. Dipo Fashina, said, "Any policy that drive poor people alone must be rejected. The logic of okada ban is arrogance of power over the people that elected them. Why not seize the cars and aeroplanes that also cause accident? he asked.

Fashina further said JAF was very worried about the state of the nation where millions of Nigerians are thinking of how to survive. He added, "In January and February, the fuel subsidy resistance did not start with any NGOs. On the last day of December, JAF met and after a long thought about it, we noticed that government was going to increase the fuel price and so, we must begin the struggle and it shows that Nigerians are ready to fight for their right."

Speaking on behalf of the okada riders, Mr. Aliyu Muhammed, said "Okada came into existence with the concept of the state government. Many okadas were seized due to several allegations which the government has not found time to confirm themselves if true or not." He thereby called on JAF to come to their aid over how okada business will come back to full operation.

Speaking on the January fuel subsidy struggle, Mr. Bamidele Aturu, said "Concerning the January struggle, we should not believe that it was entirely useless when the President himself can said he was scared deep about the struggle." and suggested that "we should use our fundamental struggle to fight for our right."

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