Some of the impounded motorbikes at the Tesano MTTD yard
About 23 commercial motor riders popularly known as okada, arrested at the Tesano areas in Accra, have been fined GH¢20,000 by an Accra motor court for committing various offences.
The suspects were among 68 others who were apprehended on March 30, 2017 in a special operation organized by the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service to ensure sanity on the roads.
ASP Francis Aboagye, commanding officer in-charge of the Tesano MTTD, said the suspects were fined between GH¢320 and GH¢920 depending on the charges leveled against them.
He said the offenders had no riders’ licence, helmet, insurance cover, reflectors and road worthiness certificates.
He said the law requires that road users – whether drivers or riders – must have a valid licence, road worthiness certificate, insurance and others, but the arrested motor riders had none of the above and were using the vehicles for commercial purposes too.
“Some even use the motorbikes to commit crime and since they have no valid identification, it becomes difficult tracing them,” according to ASP Aboagye.
The MTTD commander said in all 69 suspects were apprehended and their motorbikes seized.
“Those arrested who had no documents on them at the time of the arrest,” the Tesano MTTD commander asserted, “later produced the documents and their bikes released to them.”
He continued, “Out of the 68 persons grabbed, nine of the suspects were given a warning letter by the court and released while 18 others are still being investigated.”
The exercise was conducted upon a directive from the MTTD headquarters and in all, 570 riders were arrested at various locations, including Weija, Odorkor, Kaneshie, Accra Central and Tesano among others.
Out of the numbers that were sent to court, records available indicated that 87 were fined for various offences.
By Linda Tenyah-Ayettey