From MAGNUS EZE, Abuja
A young Ghanaian entrepreneur, Mr. Samuel Kwesi Sackey, was in Abuja, over the weekend for the first time, to participate in the African Governance and Corporate Leadership Forum 2016, organised by the Institute for Government Research Leadership Technology.
Sackey, who is vice president, Elie Company Limited, which runs vehicle testing and inspection station in Tema, Ghana, led a delegation to receive award of excellence on behalf of the company.
He said the honour would further strengthen the firm’s resolve for better service delivery. But beyond the excitement of being recognised by a reputable body for his contribution to safety on African roads, particularly within the West African sub-region, the young investor was held spellbound by the aesthetic splendour of Abuja:
“Abuja is very beautiful. I have been going to Lagos many times; and had impression about Nigeria, but coming into Abuja, my impression is changed. Abuja is much more than I had expected. A lot of construction is going on, very modern, well planned city. I think it is one of the most beautiful cities in Africa.”
He told Daily Sun that Nigerian cuisines are very delicious as according to him, the country has almost the same food culture with Ghana. He, however, noted that cuisines he ate in Abuja especially Amala with Ogbono or bitter leaf soup were wonderfully tasty.
He confessed that what actually made his day was the tastefully prepared cat fish otherwise called “point and kill” that is synonymous with gardens and parks in the Federal Capital Territory, saying he could schedule another visit soon just because of the fish:
“We went to point and kill joint; it was really spectacular, I love it. I have only had local food since we came into Abuja. We have a lot of catfish in Ghana, but we don’t call it point and kill. They just prepare and eat it. But what I met here in Abuja was great. It could make me visit the city again once I have the opportunity.”
He stated that vehicle testing and inspection business has enormous prospect in Nigeria because of the large number of vehicles in the country. He said vehicles in Lagos alone are higher than vehicles in Ghana, noting that Nigeria has high rate of auto accidents sometimes attributed to poor inspection and maintenance of vehicles.
He urged the Nigerian authorities to embrace use of technological diagnostics in vehicle inspection since the manual method used by the Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIOs) was out dated: “The job of VIOs should not be done manually; it entails automated inspection. That’s what we do, from brake, suspension, headlights, everything through automation. That’s what Nigeria needs at the moment.”
He further asked that the rail system be properly developed in the FCT to help in movement of goods as according to him, carrying loads with vehicles sometimes pose a lot of danger.
Managing director of ThruVision Technologies, Dr. Kofo Olugbesan, urged government to place premium of MOT saying it will reduce carnage on the road. She commended the Federal Road Safety Commission’s introduction of speed limiter for commercial vehicles, but called for more attention to vehicle testing and inspection, because a stich in time saves nine:
“Government should recognise the importance of MOT; ensure that it’s effectively enforced not just people going to pay one thousand naira and collect the MOT clearance paper. Which is wrong and then we have all manner of rickety vehicles that should not be on the road because they are not road worthy. But if they are duly tested, many of them will be off the road and make Nigerian roads safe for the people instead of all these trailers killing people anyhow.”