Challenges associated with the road haulage business in Nigeria are numerous

Haulage is the commercial transportation of goods either by road or by rail. However, with the collapse of the rail system in Nigeria, ‘road’ haulage business has assumed a wider dimension and has become the most utilized way of inter-state movement of goods; yielding high returns on investment.

The goods usually transported through this form include the perishables and not so perishable ones, which however can be classified generally as either dry cargo or wet cargo.

But for our concern here today, we will be limiting our focus to ‘Road’ Haulage that involves dry cargos; that is the movement of both finished and or semi-finished products which sometimes are dangerous if wrongly handled.

The challenges associated with the road haulage business in Nigeria are numerous; especially considering the behaviours, experiences and diverse backgrounds of the drivers that manage the trucks through which goods are delivered to various sites across the country.

Usually in the business of ‘road’ haulage, the cost of goods being transported is more than the cost of the truck being used to transport it. This cost, added to the cost of the truck is a huge one which should under no circumstances be allowed lost through carelessly of the driver or to his overzealousness.

When the unforeseen happens, the nation’s economy suffers the impact. The company involved shares a greater percentage; while the owner(s) are left by the drivers to secretly lick their wound of a colossal lose of goods and property. And whenever the incident takes live(s), it brings sorrow and anguish to many families.

However, it is in order to stem all these aforementioned calamities among several others not yet mentioned, re-orientate the haulage drivers for optimum performance, among others that the Board of Trustees of Automobiles And Road Safety Initiative considered it necessary to organize this Safety Awareness Training Conference as Haulage is very important to the socio-economic development of any nation and its safety should not be toyed with.

Though it is good news to note that the transport sector is currently receiving a major boost from the various tiers of government, the Board of Trustees of Automobiles And Road Safety Initiative however whishes to call on government at various levels to expedite action by changing for better, the state of the Nigerian Roads that are at various stages of disrepair as an efficient transport system coupled with good roads is an essential component in the production and distribution of goods.

Meanwhile, before the nation’s roads are properly put in drive-friendly shapes across the length and breadth of the country, we urge our brothers, the haulage drivers who ply the Nigerian Roads daily to be conscious of their safety, the goods they transport, safety of other road users and be mindful of their huge contributions to the growth of the nation’s economy.

Ladies and gentlemen, I won’t like to take much of your time any longer, let me leave the stage for the various expert guest speakers to do justice to their Paper Presentation, but before I do that, let me quickly on behalf of the Board of Trustees of Automobiles And Road Safety Initiative thank our Special Guests of Honour, the Honourable Commissioner for Special Duties, Lagos State, Dr. Wale Ahmed for finding time to be here to add value to today’s events.

I thank the astoundingly beautiful Princess Abioye Philips, the Special Assistant on Transportation to His Excellency, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), the Executive Governor of Lagos State who has equally found time to represent the Ministry of Transportation at this event.

We thank the Chairman of the Events, Mr. Ola Oresanya, the Managing Director of Lagos State Waste Management Authority; the Lagos State Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Barrister Chidi Nkwonta; the Zonal Public Relations Officer of the Federal Road Safety Corps who also doubles as the Zonal Education Officer, ACC Olusegun Ogungbemide; the Chief Executive of Lagos State Vehicle Inspection Service, Engr. Hafiz Gbilohan Toriola; the Director General, Lagos State Safety Commission, Mrs. Dominga Odebunmi; the Management of Techno Oil Nigeria Limited, the Chief Executives of various haulage companies who approved the participation of their busy drivers, the various guest speakers, other guests present here with us, gentlemen of the press and most importantly you, ladies and gentlemen for honouring our call to be part of this project. May you continue to be blessed!

You are all welcomed!

SAMUEL OLOYEDE ORIOWO
President
Tel: +2347083808902

Welcome Address by Mr. Samuel Oloyede Oriowo, President, Automobiles And Road Safety Initiative at Safety Awareness Training Conference for Nigerian Haulage Drivers in Lagos on Thursday 15th May, 2015