Obiano gives July 1 deadline to “okada” riders to vacate Onitsha, Awka

Obiano gives July 1 deadline to “okada” riders to vacate Onitsha, Awka

- Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state gave motorcycle riders July 1 ultimatum to vacate Onitsha and Awka cities

- The governor also gave shanty-dwellers on the Bank of River Niger August 1 ultimatum to vacate the place

- Obiano said the deadlines were given to allow the affected people to make necessary adjustments ahead of government’s action

Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state has given commercial motorcycle riders popularly called “Okada riders” in Onitsha and Awka until Sunday, July 1, to vacate the two cities.

The directive of the governor was contained in a statement on Wednesday, May 23, in Awka, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports. gathered that the statement signed by James Eze, the chief press secretary to Governor Obiano explained that the directive followed resolution by the Anambra Executive Council after a meeting on Tuesday, May 22.

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“The ultimatum given to Okada operators in the two cities is part of the overall strategy adopted by the state government to deepen its crackdown on crime and restore sanity to Onitsha, the commercial never centre and Awka, the capital city,” the government said.

The governor further directed residents of some make-shift structures on the banks of the River Niger stretching from Onitsha to Ogbaru to vacate the place before Wednesday, August 1.

Authorities noted that the waterfront had been marked fordemolition, saying that the demolition of the waterfront was another measure to check activities of men of the underworld in the state.

The governor said the deadline given to Okada operators and the shanty-dwellers is intended to offer them enough time to make the necessary adjustments ahead of government’s action.

He said that other resolutions by the council includes the establishment of a committee on environment with a mandate to clean up Anambra, clearing out garbage dumps and overflowing drainage systems.

The state government also said that the council equally resolved to demolish illegal structures that were either obstructing the way or ruining the aesthetics of the Anambra environment.

“The committee is expected to sustain the on-going campaign to put an end to roadside trading that often leads to avoidable traffic congestion and return sanity to the roads and highways of Anambra state,’’ the governor said.

The governor specifically commended the agencies behind the on-going demolition exercise in the state.

He said that the team should sustain the momentum until thestate begins to wear a better look even as he sent a note of warning to owners of illegal structures along the famous Awka road in Onitsha.

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Council frowned at the current practice by some Awka residents who sometimes dump their refuse along the road around the Zik Avenue axis. previously reported that Anambra state government threatened to forcefully acquire lands from communities fighting over ownership as a way of ending land disputes in the state.

The warning was given by the state deputy governor, Nkem Okeke, after resolving 100 years of old land dispute between Umunachi in Dunukofia local government area and Ogidi in Idemili North local government area of the state.

The deputy governor said: “Each time I am to preside over a land issue, I develop headache. The most difficult job I have to deal with as a deputy governor is land dispute. I just came back from Abuja where we visited the National Boundary Commission over our land dispute with Enugu and Kogi states…”

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