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Major blow for motorbike ecommerce deliveries in Nigeria

In a serious blow for ecommerce deliveries, the Lagos state government announced on Twitter that it will ban motorcycles, commonly known as okadas, from operating in most of Lagos because of what it described as their “chaos and disorderliness” and “scary figures” of fatal accidents. Companies such as, ORide and Gokada have been aiming to capitalise on the congested Lagos roads to expand their operations. The ban uses a 2018 law to bar okadas and small three-wheeled vehicles, known as kekes, from 1 February. They will be banned from 40 bridges and flyovers and areas covering the business districts of Victoria Island and Lagos Island. Given the chronic traffic grid-lock in cities like Lagos, the only sensible way to deliver is by motorbike, and, as this Newsletter has reported previously, ownership of motorbike fleets have been a good investment throughout most of Africa over the last decade. Apart from delivery, many are used as taxis (an interesting somewhat perilous way to navigate traffic and actually arrive at your business meeting on time in cities like Cairo, Nairobi, etc).

Last year we reported that in the first 9 months of 2018, over 70 delivery personnel died in crashes in South Africa according to the SA Motorcycle Association. We called then for more training on safety, and for better insurance for drivers.

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Alastair Tempest

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