The minister seized the motorcycles and others over the weekend.
The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Bala Mohammed, has said that his administration impounded 200 motorcycles, okada, within the last 48 hours.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Nosike Ogbuenyi, the minister said the seizure was part of a move to “boost the security, peace and orderliness of the Federal Capital Territory.”
The statement said the minister, over the weekend, flagged-off a massive security and environmental operation to flush out criminals, urchins, motorcycle riders, hawkers and other illegal operators within Abuja city and its environs.
It said the exercise will be extended to the area councils and satellite towns.
The minister said the timing of the commencement of the exercise at this Yuletide season was a deliberate move to strengthen security of lives and property in Abuja.
Others who joined the Minister in the operation include the Abuja Police Commissioner, Adenrele Shinaba, and his squad; the Road Traffic Services; the Abuja Environmental Protection Board, AEPB; the Development Control Department; as well as the men and officers of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps.
The operation which lasted several hours took the squad to many flashpoints within the city such as the Area One roundabout, Apo junction, Mechanics Village in Apo and Lokogoma – Galadimawa Road.
The statement noted that during the operation, several miscreants, destitute and other illegal operators were dislodged and arrested; while no fewer than 200 motorcycles were impounded.
Speaking at the ever busy Area One, Garki, roundabout, the Minister said that the exercise would be a continuous one. He directed traders on the road sides to quit the place within 24 hours or risk arrest, confiscation of their wares and prosecution. He told the traders that the roundabout is not for commercial activities but for smooth human and vehicular movement. He equally directed the ejection of commercial bus operators from their illegal park on the Area One road shoulders.
At the Apo Mechanic Village, Mr. Mohammed gave the road side traders till December 31 to vacate the road sides or face the wrath of the law. He told them that after that date, the bulldozers would be rolled in to demolish illegal structures there.
The minister explained that the operation is in the larger interest of the generality of the people adding that it would benefit all residents if Abuja is sanitized and rid of miscreants, criminals and other perpetrators of illegality.
Speaking on behalf of the Police and other security agencies involved in the operation, Mr. Shinaba assured the minister and residents that the operation would be sustained by his officers and men. He thanked the minister for his tremendous support.
Mr. Shinaba decried the stubbornness of some motorcycle riders who continued to defy the authorities by plying city routes despite their ban in such places and their restriction to satellite towns and area councils.
He pledged that the police would leave no stone unturned towards stamping out motorcycle riders from the city. The Police boss also stated that the field operation was not limited to Garki, Apo and Lokogoma districts stressing that it would be extended to other parts of Abuja.