Okada riders protest killing of colleague by cop in Lagos

Okada riders used to illustrate the story.

Nov. 6 (PREMIUM TIMES) – The already edgy relationship between commercial motorcycle riders, commonly called Okada, and the Lagos State Government further took a dive on Tuesday as the motorcyclists, went on a rampage in the Ilupeju and Magodo areas of the state over the alleged killing of one of their own.

It was alleged that a cop shot a motorcyclist after he evaded the policeman who was about to arrest him for violating the new traffic law in the state restricting the operation of commercial motorcyclists.

Witnesses claimed the cop, alongside his colleagues, immediately fled the scene of the incident.

The riot started after the shot motorcyclist was pronounced dead in a nearby hospital.

Riot policemen were soon mobilised to the troubled area to forestall a complete breakdown of order.

It is however unclear whether the protest in the Magodo area is linked to the killing of the motorcyclist in Ilupeju.

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Eyewitness said motorcyclists, evading policemen who were chasing them for evading the new traffic law, attacked two officials of the Lagos State Traffic and Management Authority (LASTMA) controlling traffic. The LASTMA officials were rescued by passers-by.

The motorcyclists also set fire on tyres and obstructed traffic in the area.

The police and other law enforcement agencies in the state have come under severe criticism for their high-handed approach to enforcing the traffic law.

It is alleged that state officials burnt many of the motorcycles seized from operators.

The motorcyclists union is challenging the traffic law in court.

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