The Lagos State House of Assembly may review the impact of the state Road Traffic Law signed recently for implementation by the state Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola.
Deputy Speaker of the House, Taiwo Kolawole gave this hint while addressing protesters who stormed the Assembly complex yesterday to register their displeasure over the law which they claimed reminded them of the military era.
According to Kolawole, the law is currently passing through impact assessment. This would make the government have a true knowledge of the impact of the law on those it meant to affect.
He promised that the House would take a critical look at the controversial Schedule 2 of the law which banned commercial motorcycle riders from plying 475 roads in the state.
The okada riders, as they are popularly called, had agreed to obey every provision of the law including the ones banning them from carrying two passengers or riding on the highways, but they kicked against the Schedule 2.
One of the civil rights activists, who accompanied the protesting motorcycle riders to the Assembly, Gbenga Akomolafe, wondered why Acme Road where industries are located could be among the listed roads forbidden by the okada riders.
While addressing the Deputy Speaker, Akomolafe informed him that commuter buses do not ply Acme Road thus making the workers in the area rely on motorcyclists.
“What happens to them now that the road is listed?” He asked Mr. Kolawole.
The Deputy Speaker said though the law passed through a public hearing before it was formally passed by the House, the grievances of the protesters would be considered.
“A gentleman also spoke about a road (Acme) that is not plied by our yellow buses, we will look into this.
“We will look at your complaints and the ones that are truly genuine, we may reconsider,” he said.
Kolawole, who later raised the issue at the floor of the House, noted that there were several graduates and artisans among the okada riders and that they took to the means of generating money because government had not performed its responsibility concerning creating opportunities for job creation.
He however said the law came into existence because of the risky behaviour of some of them.
While advising the protesters against unruly behaviour during protests, Speaker Adeyemi Ikuforiji took a swipe at security officials who prevented them from gaining access to the Assembly.
According to Ikuforiji, the Assembly is a general place where protesters can register their grievances.
He lamented that the road leading to the Assembly complex was blocked by the huge number of protesters because of the action of the security agent, mostly the police.
The House later handed the petition from the protesting okada riders and the civil rights activists over to the House Committee on Transport, Commerce and Industry for recommendation.