President of the Okada Riders Association, Michael Kofi Owusu has disclosed that the Okada business has created livelihoods for over 800,000 people and still counting.
In an interview with Samuel Eshun on the Happy Morning Show, Kofi noted that “over 800,000 people depend on the Okada business for survival” and as such a legalization of the Okada business will be much welcomed.
Speaking on how these Okada riders receive training in the riding of the motorbikes, he stated that while he cannot speak for everyone, his involvement in the Okada business came as a result of losing his job as a dispatch rider.
“Personally, I was a dispatch rider in a company. However, the company collapsed and I used the opportunity to venture into the Okada business. So I can say I have a little training.”
“I received training from a man who trains motor riders at Dansoman.You are taught how to move and follow regulations among other things”, he said.
When asked if he was aware the venture was illegal in Ghana, he argued, “If I can take my wife and family then why should I not charge for others. I am helping people get to their destination and that is it. I have to make money”.
He furthered that putting politics aside, regulating and legalizing Okada will be a great push to the country’s economy while reducing the discriminatory attitude of health workers towards Okada riders.
“When we go to the hospital and they [health workers] get to know that the person involved in an accident is a rider,all hospitals decide not to care for the person.
We should be made to legally operate. We should put politics aside and do well for us[Okada Riders]. We plead with them to champion this agenda and help us as a country grow”
Section 128 (1) of the Road Traffic Regulations, 2012 states: “The licensing authority shall not register a motorcycle to carry a fare paying passenger.”
The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama, has, however, disclosed that he will legalize Okada should he win the 2020 general elections.
He states that it is important to legalize this field to serve as a form of livelihood to a lot of people .