By David Adeoye
The Oyo State Government will soon issue identification card for every motorcycle (okada) operator across the state as part of measures to check crimes and influx of bad elements into the state.
Prof. Raphael Afonja, the Commissioner for Public Works and Transport, made this known in Ibadan on Thursday while addressing newsmen on government’s plan to ensure smooth commercial motorcycle business in the state.
Afonja also announced that Gov. Seyi Makinde had ordered the immediate reduction of the daily levy paid by each motorcycle and tricycle operator in the state from N200 to N100, to ameliorate the suffering of the riders.
He noted that Gov. Makinde did not want to add to the burden of the people of the state.
The commissioner said “In order to control crimes being associated with motorcyclists and the influx of commercial motorcyclists into Oyo State, the government will in due course, issue Riders’ card to all registered commercial motorcyclists in the state.
“This will enable the government to differentiate registered commercial motorcyclists from criminal elements, who are using motorcycles to operate.
“We have concluded that due to what happened in Lagos State, which has led to influx of okada riders moving from Lagos into Oyo State. There is a need to have okada riders’ card to identify people coming into the state.
“So, in collaboration with the revenue collector for the state and FRSC and the unions, we will start to gather information on those who are engaging in commercial or private cycling businesses in the state.
“This is possible through profiling. The security agencies are in need of these pieces of information.”
According to him, this registration of motorcycle operators through the riders’ cards will be a database for us to know who is who; who owns what; who they are, where they live and the rest.
“We will also add their Bank Verification Number (BVN) to know who they really are.
“Recently, you may have heard about snatching of bikes and robberies using motorcycles. That is why we are trying to make sure that all motorcycles in the state are properly registered.
“We will ensure they do what is needful to make sure they obey the law,” Afonja said.
The commissioner explained that the Riders’ card would afford the government the opportunity to have a database of the riders across the state.
On the daily levy collection of N100, Afonja said revenue collectors would be at every park from Friday, Feb. 21.
He urged commercial motorcycle and tricycle operators to cooperate with the revenue collectors.