As the ban on the operations of Okada and Keke in some parts of Lagos State enters day three, sparking outrage on social media, some prominent Nigerians have lambasted the government for not providing an alternative before the ban took effect.
The ban took effect on Saturday amidst outcry from residents and riders lamenting that it will place untold hardship on them.
Some Lagos residents were seen in viral photos and videos trekking several miles to get to major bus stops where they would get buses to their destinations.
Although the government announced on Sunday night that it will roll out 65 new buses on Monday to cushion the hard effect of the ban, many residents have argued that the new buses will not fill the vacuum left by the Okada and Keke riders.
Commuters who go out in the early hours of the day to go to work were seen trekking to work on Monday.
The ban also took a dramatic turn on Monday morning as violence broke out in some parts of the State between policemen and Okada and Keke riders.
Reacting to the Lagos state government’s policy, a former Director General of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms, Dr Joe Abah said the government ought to have first introduced the buses and test if it will work before taking Okada and Keke off the roads.
“With the Lagos #OkadaBan, we appear, as usual, to have gone for the option that involved the least thought & planning from a public policy perspective. If you are introducing 65 buses & 14 new ferries from tomorrow, introduce them first and watch it work before announcing a ban.”
#EndSARS campaigner Segun Awosanya popularly known as Segalink also questioned why the government would take people’s livelihood without first creating alternatives.
“This right here shows the level of disconnect of this admin with the people they ought to serve. I strongly believe there are people working tenaciously to ensure the admin fails from within. You reneged on your promises to these people with militarized sanctions yet you pat yourself on the back in delusion by describing this as compliance as though this was an agreement or based on mutual understanding? Where in the world do Govt oppressively take people’s livelihood without creating an alternative first? This is not Governance!
“Dear Lagosians, You are slowly becoming the people you ought to have been a long time ago. The power belongs to you in a democracy and those in public service ought to be accountable to you and do your will and not the other way round. It stops when you say ENOUGH.
“This is how they defined compliance in a democracy. I’ve often said that people coerced into marrying the ideas of identity politics of hate and oppression will always be widowed in no distant future. We are not at war yet untold hardship is unconscionably weaponized for control.”