Terrorism: Nigerians knock FG over propose ban on Okada operations




Nigerians have chided the Federal Government over the proposed plans to ban Okada operations throughout the country.

Recall that in an effort to stem the spate of insecurity in Nigeria, the federal government through the National Security Council (NSC) had proposed plans to place a ban on the operations of motorcycles, popularly known as Okada in Nigeria.

The NSC further announced that it is also considering a nationwide ban on mining activities in the country as part of the strategy to curb terrorism activities, checkmate loopholes and cut off their sources of funding.

In what many see as an ill-timed and cavalier proposition especially during this torrid economic dispensation, Nigerians on social media knocked the federal government over the proposition.

“Meaning that this group of our today’s rulers has lost every sense of humanity. Instead of tackling the jihadists that your created to conquer Nigeria with blood of the innocents being wasted daily at your watch, you want to throw every Nigerian family into penury.

Heartless individuals,” a Facebook by the name Eugene Uchnendu angrily reacted.
Another Facebook user by the name Franklin Ezenwa NNE believed the proposition could deteriorate the already volatile security architecture, saying that “I see a more scary insecurity challenge loading if this is implemented. The government should have a rethink.  What job opportunities or enabling environments that will foster businesses of the common, have they created.”

On his part, questions were raised over the constitutional rights of the Federal Government to unilaterally place a ban on means of transportation by Mr Moses Abudu, asking whether “When did transportation become an item on the federal exclusive list in our constitution? This government should leave states to regulate their transport system.”

Solomon Long Giwa said on his Facebook account, “You closed borders, the ones in the north were still effective- free flow of ammunition, things got worse. What is the gain of closing the borders? Jobs are not created, the little foreign ones are disappearing.Not everyone in the borders were involved in illegal activities.

“Banning okadas again will solve or reduce what? Large numbers are earning from okada business. FG should know the more people are out of business doing nothing the more we are doomed security wise. Most people that still earn legally one way or the other will not engage in armed robbery or kidnapping. These ills can be reduced to the nearest level. This fight can also be won this way.”

Recall that the proposition was the outcome of the meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja.

Addressing state house correspondents after the meeting chaired by the President, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami stated that investigations are still ongoing especially to establish the correlation between mining and motorcycles which they suspect provide funding for the supply of arms to the terrorists.

Malami who noted that terrorists had moved from the conventional ways of funding their activities to mining and ransom taking, disclosed the government was not unaware of the economic consequences of the proposed resolutions, particularly the motorcycle ban but it has become imperative in order to guarantee the nation’s security.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Interior, Aregbesola, speaking on the attack on Kuje prisons  detailed that despite the extensive intelligence gathered before the onslaught, the attacks succeeded due to “there was no will to act.”

He also revealed that President Buhari had received a report on the preliminary investigation of the Kuje attack and officers who have been found to renege on their responsibilities would be punished.

Terrorist groups, in particular in Nigeria, are increasingly interested in controlling areas of production of gold.

The opportunistic nature of these activities ties strongly to the fact that gold is often the favoured mineral of the terrorist groups as many of these groups use this to secure a source of funding for future operations.