In January 2020, there were rumours of a likely motorcycle and tricycle locally known as “Okada” and “Keke” respectively ban in Lagos. It seemed like a joke and a mere rumour initially but on the 1st of February, 2020, it became a reality and on the 3rd of February which was the first official working day after the ban, Lagosians really felt the heat with not a single “Okada” or “Keke” in plain sight to transport them to their various places of work and business.
Social media was also on fire that day with #otrek and #okadaban trending everywhere. From that day, it became a norm for bus stops and streets all over Lagos to now always be crowded with a handful of Lagosians waiting for a means of transport to and fro work and trekking back home after standing at the bus stop for a long time without any luck.
Knowing how overpopulated and fast-paced the city of Lagos is, if a solution or alternative is not given to this Okada ban issue, it will not be nice at all and Lagosians will end be fed up and worn out as we are still battling with traffic issues in this state and now this has happened.
Therefore, to survive and make the best out of the situation during this Okada ban period, you can consider doing the following:
- Find alternative options
Uber, Taxify and yellow taxis are all over the place. Start planning your monthly transport fare budget towards patronizing these transport mediums. They usually offer a fast, convenient and comfortable transport service as the vehicles are always air-conditioned especially for the uber and Taxify cars.
2. Get friendly with your neighbours that have cars
Be friendly. Be open. Find out which of your neighbours has a car and is always going your way every morning so you can hitch a ride. I am sure that they won’t mind if they are nice. Things are already hard enough for everybody. Just make sure you always hold some spare cash on you so you can contribute for fuel once in a while.
3. Find alternative routes
Lagos is known for its legendary traffic but this ban has made it even worse. The solution is to find alternative routes you can follow to avoid the traffic and get to work or wherever you are going on time. For you to achieve that, you need to be conversant with different roads, routes and corners in Lagos.
4. Follow your staff bus
If your company can afford to provide a staff bus, wake up early enough and be on time to catch the bus every morning to work. It will go a long way and also help you save transport expenses.
5. Wake up early
Lagosians are already known for waking up quite early to get to work on time especially the ones living on the mainland but working on the island. If you start waking up earlier, you may be able to beat the traffic before a lot of people and get a vehicle early enough to get to work on time.
6. Be positive
You can also decide to see the good in this ban so you can feel much better about it. Even though I regret that the “Keke” and “Okada” riders lost their jobs, at least, there is now a certain level of sanity on major roads and of course fewer accidents. I am sure in time, the government will find a better alternative means of transport and also provide other jobs for the “Keke” and “Okada” riders that lost their jobs and means of lively hood.