It was January 2020, and the ride-hailing business in Nigeria was booming.
Dopemu Abiola had just signed up to become a driver on ORide, one of the leading motorbike-hailing companies in Lagos. But just a week before he was set to start, he discovered an unusual crowd gathered around the stall of his favourite newspaper vendor.
They were discussing news that would quickly curdle his excitement into disappointment: Okadas—or motorcycle taxis—had been banned by the Lagos state government, citing accidents and security concerns. This wasn’t the first time commercial bikes had been banned by the state, but this time, the net had extended to startups. Dopemu felt as helpless as thousands of other drivers who could do nothing but stand by and watch “the fate of companies who are on the verge of losing millions due to this new policy.”
Originally published on Quartz : Original article