Kenny EMMANUEL

As part of efforts to address rising insecurity, Kaduna State Government has shutdown communication networks and banned the use of motorcycles popularly known as okada, for commercial and personal purposes in the state.

The state also announced the shutdown of communication networks in some parts of the state beginning from Wednesday.

The state Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan,  disclosed these during a press conference in Kaduna three days after bandits killed no fewer than 51 people in the southern part of the state.

In Kaduna, Aruwan while addressing journalists,  said, “Recall that Governor Nasir El-Rufai announced in a media chat yesterday (September 28,  2021) that the state government had formally requested the Federal Government to enforce the shutdown of telecom services in parts of the state identified by security agencies as requiring such measures.

“The relevant federal agencies have today informed the Kaduna State Government that the processes for telecoms shutdown in parts of the state have commenced.

“As part of the steps to address the current security situation in Kaduna State and neighbouring states in the North-West and North-Central, the state government has held several meetings with security agencies to adopt critical measures towards crushing bandits in their identified hideouts.

“The military and other security forces have been carrying out assaults on the identified locations. The state government is advised that certain measures are now necessary to assist the spirited efforts of these security agencies.

“The following measures become effective from Thursday,  September 30 2021; the complete ban on the use of motorcycles (okada), for commercial or personal purposes, for three months in the first instance; ban on possession of or wielding of dangerous weapons.

“Tricycles are allowed to operate only from 6am to 7pm. All tricycles must remove all curtains. Movement of all tricycles is restricted from dusk till dawn (7pm to 6am).

“All vehicles used for commercial transport must be painted yellow and black within 30 days. Vehicles that are part of ride-hailing services are to carry yellow and black stripes.”

Meanwhile, mix reactions have continued to trail the ban in Kaduna

Some residents in Kaduna on Thursday commended the move while others maintained that the Government should rescind its decision.

Mr Nura Mohammed of Unguwan Rimi said although the decision had its attendant effect, and well intended, nothing good comes without a price. The number of casualty lost to insecurity can not be equated to the temporal inconvenience the development would cause some people.

“We hope that within the time in question, much result would be recorded,” Mohammed said.

Mallam Salisu Iro, a resident of Kabala, also supported the development, saying that residents now have a sense of relief over government’s resolve to end banditry in the state.

“I own a private motorcycle but I fully support government’s decision because everyone is now threatened with insecurity.

“We will device means to cope with the situation in the next three months,” he said.

Mr Kunle Adeolu, a commercial motorcycle operator resident at Barnawa, said the development would affect his source of livelihood.

He stressed that as a father of four, his family depended on his commercial motorcycle business, adding, “I do not have any alternative source of income and as such, I don’t even know how we will survive in the next three months or more.

“I urge the state government to at least regulate the time for commercial motorcycle operators so that we don’t starve,” Adeolu said.

Another commercial operator resident at Ungwan, Mu’azuKabir Alhamdu, said the ban, if not checked, would further increase criminality due to redundancy amongst youths.

“You can imagine how many youths would be exposed to criminality when they stay idle without any source of income,” he said.

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