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Residents Condemn Menace By Okada Riders

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Friends or foes…A group of Okada riders

RESIDENTS of Isolo and Oshodi, Lagos State, have decried criminal activities perpetrated by motorcyclists, reeling out stories of handbag and mobile phones snatching. Some of the residents, who spoke with The Guardian, said the hoodlums operate in the wee hours when people set out for the day’s business or at night when they are returning from work.

They pointed out that women constitute the bulk of the victims because they are perceived as softer targets. A woman, Felicia Edward, narrated how two men on a motorcycle accosted her one morning as she went for Mass and dispossessed her of her handbag.

Another, Charity Bakare, said she was robbed as she returned from her day’s work with the men making away with her valuables. “I am scared of coming back home at night. Because of that experience, I now leave my workplace as early as 5pm to avoid another encounter,” said Bakare.

Reacting to the incident, however, Chairman, Isolo “C” branch of the Motorcycle Operators Association, Lagos State (MOALS), Mr. Felix Chukwu, said the culprits are not members of his association.

He said: “We know our members. They have identity cards. The cards display the areas and units where each rider belongs. Any rider who does not have an identity card is not our member. We always nab the bad ones and hand them over to the police. Those who have no identity cards are the evil ones who snatch money and other items from people.

We have a taskforce too that enforces our laws, so that hoodlums would not hide within us to perpetrate evil.”

A woman, Felicia Edward, narrated how two men on a motorcycle accosted her one morning as she went for Mass and dispossessed her of her handbag. Another, Charity Bakare, said she was robbed as she returned from her day’s work with the men making away with her valuables. “I am scared of coming back home at night. Because of that experience, I now leave my workplace as early as 5pm to avoid another encounter,” said Bakare.


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