Kaduna shuts down telecommunications, bans ‘okada’

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The Kaduna state government has announced a ban on the use of motorcycles for commercial and personal purposes.

The state government also said the processes for the shutdown of telecommunication services in parts of the state have commenced.

Samuel Aruwan, the commissioner for internal security and home affairs, made this known during a press briefing on Wednesday.

The commissioner said the measures will assist the security agencies to carry out their operations in parts of the state.

“You will recall that Governor Nasir El-Rufai announced in a media chat yesterday (28th September 2021) that the state government has 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,” he said.

“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 neighboring states in the northwest and north-central regions, KDSG 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, 30 September 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.

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

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

The commissioner also announced the ban on the sale of petrol “in jerry cans or other containers” in Birnin Gwari, Giwa, Chikun, Igabi, Kachia, Kagarko, and Kajuru LGAs.

He said: “The Kaduna state government regrets the severe strain and inconvenience these measures will place on peaceful and law-abiding citizens. The government, therefore, appeals for the understanding and cooperation of all residents of the affected areas, and indeed across the state. These difficult times have demanded that difficult decisions be made.

“The measures have been adopted purely in the interest of our collective safety and security, and to aid our brave forces in their fight against these mindless criminals.

Too many lives have been lost, and too many families have been shattered. Small groups of wicked persons cannot continue to hold us to ransom, and force us to live in perpetual fear.”

The state government asked the residents to be understanding of the security measures, adding that the “hardship we face will be temporary”.

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