Nigeria lost a total of $15billion (about three percent) of its Gross Domestic Products to road accidents in 2015, the World Health Organisation, WHO, Global Road Safety report has said.
Disclosing this at the just concluded “Establishment, Management and Operations of Truck Transit Parks”, British former Secretary for Transport and Aviation, Dr. Paul Clark said that Truck Parks can help in reducing accidents, giving an economic boost to the country and saving lives and life changing injuries.
Clark also said that loss of cargoes during transit is an economic loss directly to the owners, but also to the economy as a whole.
He explained that transport observers have pointed out that millions of Naira every year is lost through pilfering and attack on drivers where lorries are parked in unsecured locations.
According to him, the situation is further s compounded by the wrong type of Lorries carrying cargoes, often with no latches thereby leading to containers falling off causing deaths and injuries.
He opined that such actions should be considered illegal by law enforcement agencies.
He said “Millions of Naira lost during transit whether by accident and/or lack of inadequate insurance policies or parked in unsecured locations can be reduced significantly by the provision of safe and secure parking locations especially helping to avoid armed robberies that are also a constant threat to the haulage industry.
“According to the report, it was estimated that, ‘not less than 15,000 job opportunities will be created across 8 States’.
It Transit Truck park facilities project are properly implemented, it would easily create more than 25,000 jobs.
“If more States key in, the extrapolated figures for employment will be significantly larger.
“Therefore, the economic case for the implementation of this project cannot be over emphasised.
“But this initiative extends beyond Nigeria’s borders. This is not an isolated project in itself solving Nigeria road transport and truckers problems.
“It is part of the African Union strategic agenda on trade facilitation within regions and an important element of ECOWAS priority project to fast track inter and intraregional trade through the free movement of people, goods, services and capital.
It is worth noting that of the proposed 8Trans African Highways crisscrossing the African continent, 5 of them is linked with Nigeria”.
The Trans African Highways, TAH2 includes Algiers-Kano-Lagos, TAH3 is the Tripoli-Ndjamina by Nigeria and the TAH5 is the Dakar-Kano by Nigeria and TAH7 runs across 15 African countries.