Worried by the menace of kidnappings and activities of hoodlums, the Ondo State Government on Friday declared that commercial motorcycle operators will only operate between 6am and 6pm in the state.
The government in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr Donald Ojogo, described as worrisome the crime rate in the state in the last few days and called on all security agencies to come out and confront the development.
Ojogo said the ban on the commercial motorcycle operators became necessary to stem down the upsurge in robbery, kidnapping and murder currently being experienced in the state.
He said: “As a government, one major responsibility is the provision of security as well as protection of lives and property. In this regard, measures aimed at achieving such goals are the least government can enunciate.
“The Ondo State Government has noted with concern, the worrisome spike in crime rate across the state. In particular, security reports at the disposal of Government are considered signs deserving of serious attention.
“Specifically, the last week witnessed an unimaginable upsurge in robbery, kidnapping and in some cases, murder. This is no doubt, condemnable.
“Government, therefore, urges all security agencies to come out and confront this abhorrent development. Every necessary support in terms of both human and logistics aids shall be provided to ensure the safety of residents within the state.”
The commissioner added that Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has directed with immediate effect “that all commercial motorcycle operators, otherwise known as Okada, are to, henceforth, operate within the hours of 6 am and 6 pm.”
“In other words, none in this category shall operate beyond 6 pm in the evening. Anyone found flouting this directive shall have his motorcycle impounded.
“That all vehicles with unauthorised tinted glasses are hereby banned from plying the roads. Every such vehicle without a duly certified permit issued by a relevant security agency shall be impounded,” Ojogo said.
He called on the people of the state to be vigilant just as he reiterated that “security enhancement and the war against insecurity are everybody’s responsibility.”
“While the government and the security agencies play their parts, it is expected that the citizens also support by way of collaborating with the relevant agencies of government,” the commissioner added.
He urged all residents of the state not to hesitate to provide useful information about crime, criminal elements and activities in their immediate environment.