The Kano Road Traffic Agency (KAROTA) has banned the use of motorcycles to carry passengers in the Kano metropolis. It has also reactivated mobile courts to try anyone found to be using them to carry people for commercial or private purposes.
Addressing journalists in his office on Monday, the managing director of KAROTA, AIG Mohammad Hadi (Rtd,) revealed that the re-introduction of the restriction was part of security measures against the resurgence of Book Haram in Kano.
"Information reaching us clearly indicated that Kano is now a soft target for the Boko Haram insurgence and we have no choice than to deploy all necessary measures to ensure security of lives and property in our state,” he stated. “Due to the military bombardment in the Northeast, information at our disposal revealed that the group are now looking for other locations, especially Kano, to perpetrate their devilish acts."
The KAROTA boss reminded the journalists that the law restricting passengers on motorbikes in Kano was enacted in February 2013 during the tenure of Rabiu Musa Kwankwanso as governor, when investigations showed that most attacks were being carried out using motorcycles. “So, part of the security strategy was the ban of passengers on motorcycles.”
He said that the law was only relaxed to make life bearable, sequel to the relative peace enjoyed in the state in the last few years.
He noted that while some states have restricted movement of motorcycles entirely, Kano is only stopping the carrying of passengers, whether commercial or private, having found reason to reactivate the enforcement of the law
The former AIG maintained that the operation, which is being executed in collaboration with other security agencies, has prosecuted 607 offenders since enforcement began seven days ago, adding that no stone would be left unturned to sanitize the system.
Under the new law, those found guilty would be charged to six months imprisonment or a fine of N10,000 fine, or both.
On the notion that the fine is merely meant to drive revenue into government coffers, Mr. Hadi said the intent is simply meant to enhance security.
A few days ago, the Department of State Security (DSS) was said to have arrested some leaders of Boko Haram in Kano. Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje,who hinted about that development during the Sallah celebration, cautioned residents to be security-conscious while going about their lawful businesses.