FG considers nationwide ‘Okada’ ban

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The Federal Government has said it is considering placing a ban on the use of motorcycles, popularly known as okada.
The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, dropped the hint Thursday while briefing State House correspondents after a meeting of the National Security Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said investigation revealed that okada were used for mining activities across the country and the ban could cut off sources of funds of terrorists and bandits.
The minister, who was flanked by his Interior and Police Affairs counterparts, Rauf Aregbesola and Mohammed Dingyadi, said the meeting focused on the logistics used by the terrorists to stop their activities.
He said the government needed to act because terrorists had moved from the conventional ways of funding their activities to mining and ransom taking.
Malami said the motorcycles were used by the bandits for movement, while mining provides them the money to fund their arms supply.
On whether the government would consider the implications of the ban of motorcycles and mining activities on ordinary Nigerians and the economy, the minister said the federal government would place national and public interests above individual interests.
While speaking, Aregbesola said substantial efforts went into gathering of intelligence before the recent attack on Kuje Correctional Center but regretted that there was the absence of will to act on it.
The minister, who said a preliminary report of investigation on the attack had been submitted to the President, assured that detailed report would be made available at the end of the probe.
He said those found to have abandoned their responsibilities would be punished.

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