A non-governmental organisation (NGO), GreenLight Initiative, has called on the government to prioritise non-motorised transport by implementing a framework as well as developing safety infrastructures that support non-motorised transport systems in Nigeria.
According to the group, the escalating concerns regarding fuel subsidy removal, climate change, pollution and public health, underscore the bicycle’s significant role in mitigating these issues.
This is coming as the group is celebrating World Bicycle Day, a day designated by the United Nations and observed yearly on June 3, which recognizes the bicycle as a versatile and efficient means of transportation, bringing numerous benefits to individuals and communities worldwide.
The theme for this year’s World Bicycle Day is Riding Together for a sustainable future. In a statement signed by Executive Director GreenLight Initiative, Simon Obi, said cycling, a non-motorized mode of transport offers numerous physical and emotional benefits. However, there are no sufficient safety infrastructures that support non-motorized transport systems in Nigeria.
He said available evidence suggests that Nigeria does not have a notable national policy on non-motorised transport systems even though there has been significant advocacy and work in terms of drafting for non-motorized transport policy.
According to him, cycling offers multiple advantages, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, combating air pollution, easing traffic congestion, and improving physical and mental well-being.
He said this year’s commemoration of World Bicycle Day in Nigeria coincides with the nation’s challenges posed by the removal of fuel subsidies. At this time GreenLight Initiative also encourages Nigerians to embrace cycling as an alternative mode of transportation as this will mitigate the impact of rising fuel costs and promote a healthier, more environmentally friendly way of commuting.
Obi said Nigeria, with its vast population and diverse geography, has immense potential to embrace cycling as a practical solution to fuel subsidy removal. The benefits of increased cycling participation go beyond reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
It will foster a sense of community, enhance road safety, and inspire a culture of active living among Nigerians. Besides, the group called Nigeria citizens to recognize the immense potential that cycling holds in building a resilient and sustainable nation. By choosing the bicycle as a primary means of commuting, Nigerians can actively contribute to reducing their carbon footprint, improving air quality, and enhancing their well-being.