At least 20 Okada riders have been killed by snatchers in the last six months in Kebbi State, the Association of Commercial Motorcycle Operators said on Thursday.
According to the Chairman of the association, Malam Nafi’u Zaki, the killings were reported in three Local Government Areas.
In a statement issued and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the chairman stated that about 800 members of the association had abandoned the business for fear of falling victims of bike snatchers.
He said, “From April to date, we have lost 20 of our members; 11 were from Birnin Kebbi Local Government while nine were from Argungu and Yauri Local Government Areas.
“They were manhandled, waylaid and sometimes strangled or stabbed to death. We registered 4,000 members as at last year; most of them were from neighbouring villages. But this year, we have only registered 3,200 members.
“We are aware of the circumstances behind the low registration; they were no longer at ease in operating their routine commercial services.”
Zaki also pleaded with the State Government and security agencies to come to the rescue of the association by tackling the menace, adding that the association hardly spend a month without recording incidents of motorcycle snatching.
He said, “Our members are in dire need of security protection as lawful and bonafide indigenes of the state.”
He, however, warned members of the association against taking law into their hands when such cases of snatching occurred.
He said, “We want to avert a situation in which our members would resort to taking law into their hands. That is why we are urgently calling on the authorities to take proactive measures.”