From Idu Jude, Abuja
In an effort to avoid a nationwide ban owing to unregulated activities of public transport motorcycle operators (commonly known as “Okada”), the National Association of Motorcycle Owners and riders in Abuja, FCT has said that its members will soon be issued with digital IDs to cut criminality in their ranks.
The union under the aegis of riders and owners of the motorcycle association of Nigeria (Roman) made this known in Abuja over the weekend while sensitising its members on the impending punishment that await defaulters.
The national president of riders and owners of the motorcycle association of Nigeria, (ROMAN) Alhaji Olusola Razaq, while speaking to The Sun during the occasion, held at Karu palace FCT, said that his leadership has engaged an ICT company that will carry out a digital image capturing of all members nationwide for proper Identification.
Alhaji Olusola said “the reason why we are here, is to inaugurate the FCT executive ahead of the national reform exercises as ordered by the federal government. And like I said we have gotten a company that will create a database for our members. the move is to ensure that there is a proper Identification of all members since there are other existing unions across the country.”
The Roman National President, also revealed that it will soon seek National regulations that will ensure the establishment of an act in the National Assembly. He added that the reason why the activities of Commercial motorcycle riders are being dispised is due to unregulated operation nationwide.
While hoping that (ROMAN)will soon be seen as an association with good regulations and better welfare for its members, he stated that carrying out the sensitisation programs across the country before the year comes to an end remains a priority.
Olusola, said, “we are also negotiating with the Road Safety and VIO on the issue of members getting their plate numbers and also to stop disobeying road rules to avoid road crashes and sudden deaths. We are also doing this to help millions of Nigerians out of poverty because many families have waited for white-collar jobs endlessly. So what I am saying is that commercial motorcycle has contributed and is still contributing to youth employment opportunities.
“It will also interest you to know that we have set up a national task force in each of the states we operate to ensure compliance.”
Chairman of FCT ROMAN, comrade Maharazu Yahaya, while talking to our correspondent, stated that the exercise is also in compliance with the strict order mandating every commercial motorcycle association in the FCT to ensure proper regulations for its members or face an outright ban.
He said that the inauguration of the new executives will ensure quick responses to all cases involving its members.
Admonishing the transport motorcycle riders in the FCT, the Commissioner of Police, who was represented by the Nyanya Area Commander, Habila Maikeffi, advised that commercial motorcycle riders, should as a matter of urgency start obeying road rules, with special emphasis on plying one-way to beat traffic gridlocks.
Maikeffi, while reiterating police readiness to carry out an order from the police commissioner, also advised the riders on mental health challenges which is a by-product of banned substances.
Maikeffi, said, “I would like you all to carry out your daily commercial operations with clean health, not under the influence of hard drugs and such makes you cause pandemonium at every little provocation.
The Chairman of the Karu Police Community Relations Committee (PCRC), Pastor Dr Bathelomeo Agbo, insisted that respect for law enforcement is key in all the operations of commercial motorcycle operators. He also appeals for proper understanding among the riders and the leaders to ensure the efficacy of all regulations, as such will enable them to enjoy the business of Commercial motorcycle business to the benefit of their families.
A commercial motorcycle rider, Musa Kaigama, speaking to The Sun, alleged that the law enforcement agency uses its members as sacrificial lambs while allowing the elites who commit the same offence of plying a one-way to go free.