As part of their efforts to promote a cleaner environment and healthier lifestyle, the Federal Ministry of Transportation is encouraging Nigerians to consider bicycles as an alternative means of commuting.
During a one-day stakeholders sensitization meeting held in Abuja, Musa Ibrahim, the Director of Road Transport and Mass Transit Administration, emphasized the importance of cycling in Nigeria, which can significantly reduce road crash incidents.
This meeting aligns with the World Bicycle Day, observed annually on June 3rd by a United Nations General Assembly resolution.
According to the Director, the World Bicycle Day recognises “The uniqueness, longevity and versatility of the bicycle as a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transport, fostering environmental stewardship and health” hence the United Nations 2023 World Bicycle Day theme: ‘Riding Together for a Sustainable Future’.
The Director also highlighted other benefits of cycling that stakeholders have endorsed, such as its potential to help eradicate poverty, promote sustainable development, enhance education (including physical education for children and young people), improve public health, prevent diseases, and foster social inclusion.
In addition, Emmanuel John, the Chief Executive Officer of Ochenuell Mobility and a proponent for Non-Motorized Transportation (NMT), presented on the ‘Power of Cycling.’ He emphasized that the cycling initiative goes beyond addressing climate change by reducing carbon footprints.
He further referenced a study conducted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, which revealed that most African countries lose 3% of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually due to traffic congestion.
John suggested that adopting Green Corridors and developing an NMT travel culture in Nigeria could be the solution to many of the identified drawbacks. He proposed the Federal Government’s support for and adoption of a National Stakeholders Forum on Bicycle Transportation to achieve these goals.