Nigeria is a highly motorised nation. This is because other than moving from one point to another by foot, virtually all the means of transportation are motorised with its resultant environmental consequences.
Hence, it is a welcome development that enthusiasts in Nigeria joined other parts of the world to mark the World Bicycle Day recently. Even more encouraging is the fact that those at the helms of affairs in government see the need to embrace cycling the more.
Minister of Transportation, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, while receiving a delegation of Cycling Federation of Nigeria in Abuja, said his ministry would partner with state governments to create easy pathways for bicycles across the country.
The CFN President, Mr. Giandomenico Massari, also reasoned that the United Nations World Bicycle day would help to resuscitate the culture of cycling in Nigeria and improve healthy living.
Meanwhile, the FCT Administration (FCTA) has promised to establish bicycle parks in the territory to encourage more people to see bicycle as a means of transportation.
Also, the FRSC Corps Marshal, Boboye Oyeyemi, is also encouraging cycling. Oyeyemi who spoke through Deputy Corps Marshal, Administration and Resources, Chidi Nwachukwu, urged all stakeholders and the general public to accept and take up cycling.
“It is a means of commuting within reasonable distance of their residence to work and other places of endeavour to reduce traffic congestion. Cycling will also help to reduce pollution and urban noise, improve health and reduce the cost of transportation”.
Embracing cycling in Nigeria will come with loads of benefits to the country. Aside the health gains like increased cardiovascular fitness, increased muscle strength and flexibility, improved joint mobility, decreased stress levels, improved posture and coordination, strengthened bones, decreased body fat level, prevention or management of disease, etc, the country also stand to benefit economically.
Reduction in the consumption of fuel, reduction in emission levels, reduction in the depletion of foreign reserves, boost in employment for production of bicycles, among other economic gains abound.