Kwara launches multi million naira transport scheme
Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara state yesterday described effective transportation system as harbinger of speedy socio -political and economic development of any nation.
Therefore, he launched another transportation scheme valued at over N300 million as a complement to the existing ones launched some few months ago.
Already, Ahmed said the 10 luxurious buses coded ‘Maigida Soludero’, would be handed over to members of the National Union of Roads Transport Workers (NURTW) just as he promised other sister unions to await their turns for their own packaged schemes.
Describing it as a “higher capacity mass transit buses”, the Governor said the aim was to reduce hardships linked with intra and inter city transportation systems in the state especially among students and civil servants.
He noted, “this intervention upscales the existing transport scheme, which involves Motorcycles, Taxis, and Mini-Buses, by introducing higher capacity Mass Transit Buses. With this scheme, intra and inter city transportation will now be more available, affordable and efficient. “As the name implies, Maigida Soludero Mass Transit Scheme is designed to ease the hardship faced by the populace, especially students, workers and other commuters who are often stranded for hours particularly during peak periods.”
Ahmed added, that the 10 buses were purchased for the NURTW through a credit facility provided by the Kwara State Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Bureau. The buses were acquired at the cost of N257 million, inclusive of comprehensive insurance and registration. He noted, “in the coming months, additional credit facilities will be provided to the Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) and the Association of Independent Marketers (AIT) to acquire buses that will ply other routes within and outside the metropolis.
“These partnerships with stakeholders in the road transport sector are designed to ensure the efficiency of this mass transit scheme through provision of additional buses without depriving transporters of their livelihoods. As you are aware, efficient transportation is not only key to public welfare, it is also germane to the economic and social lives of our people.” For the Governor, efficient transportation also enhanced commerce by making it easier to transport goods from point to point, and stimulates development, just as he opined that reliable and accessible transportation system remained a logical complement to the transport infrastructure prioritised by his administration.
He said, “having recognised these, our government started implementing transport schemes under our Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) five years ago. We saw this as another means of boosting the transportation system while providing new platforms for the economic empowerment of our people. “In 2014, we provided 100 Taxis to ease transportation across the metropolis and boost the livelihood of transporters.
A year later, we built on this by funding the purchase of another fifty taxis to enhance transportation and empower more transporters across the metropolis. Still under our MSME scheme, we have provided 193 motorcycles and 25 mini buses to various transporters based on request.” I Ahmed added, “i make bold to say that our MSME scheme has created economic opportunities and expanded the livelihoods of thousands of our people with 60, 000 people benefitting so far.”