It is usually stated that a legitimate business of about N900, 000, has been transacted, if a trailer (articulated vehicle) load of goods moves from Lagos to any major city in the far northern states.
What is of important note here is that, at the near-snail pace, which these trailers move, they spend about a week on the road.
This creates great business potential, as the drivers and motor boys are known to be heavy spenders.
In addition to the legitimate waybill, underground sharp practices in haulage businesses exist to ensure that the drivers and motor boys augment their pay and have enough money to spend on their often perilous and lonely journeys.
It is known that wherever these drivers and motor boys create as their truck stops, that place experiences a boom in business activities and an uptick in social life, often on a disorganised scale; these booms and upticks are what state governments should help organise so that the oft-romanticised, trailer parks that form in the consciousness of many Nigerian travellers would become veritable business centres that would generate revenues for the host state government.
State governments interested in this idea should build very expansive parking lots for these heavy-duty vehicles off the shoulders of major expressway at designated locations within the boundary of the state, whence trailers that have prepared for long rest would be charged bearable parking fees and their drivers and entourage encouraged to board in clean, self-contained single-room affairs; any such inviting environment would ensure that the drivers and their entourage spend, a little over there before moving on. Such rested bodies and minds would have minimal propensity to be involved in road accidents.
Sunday Adole Jonah writes from Minna, Niger State