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By: Oluwatosin Adesola
In Osogbo, the Osun State Capital, Commercial motorcyclists on Tuesday grounded economic activities at the city during a peaceful protest over introduction of daily N200 ticket fee collection by the state government.
The Commercial motorcyclists popularly known as “Okada riders” took over the popular Olaiya junction around 11:20am on Tuesday in protest against the fee collection.
Our correspondent gathered that the ticket fee is part of the state government’s efforts to boost the internal revenue generation in the state.
The protesters claimed that Okada riders association would still collect N50 ticket fee daily from them aside the N200 that the state government just introduced.
A copy of the ticket sighted by our correspondent has “Osun State Government Internal Revenue Service Transporters Daily Ticket” written on it.
One of the leaders of the Okada riders association, Mr Afeez Olakunle told our correspondent that government had announced the collection before its commencement saying Okada riders in the state are not ready to assist the government in revenue generation.
Similarly, One of the protesters Moshood Omolere said there was economic hardship in the state and the new ticket fee was too much for them to afford.
The protesters called for the scrapping of the ticket fee.
Meanwhile, the Osun State government said introduction of 200 naira daily ticket on commercial motorcyclists is a joint decision between the government and the motorcyclists associations, the Almagamated Commercial Motorcycle Owners and Riders Association of Nigeria, ACOMORAN and Motorcycle Transporters Union MUTU.
In statement by the secretary of the Osun State Board of Internal Revenue, Mrs Oluwatosin Falomo, the Agency hints that the two associations recognised resolved with the government that 200 naira would be paid daily by every registered commercial motorcyclist operators.
The Internal Revenue Board points out that the daily ticketing charge is not an extortion but a legitimate tax to improve government’s earnings.
Culled from Radio Nigeria