The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has called on the Lagos State Government to review its policy stipulating that courier companies and dispatch riders in Lagos State must use motorcycles of a minimum of 200cc capacity for their operations.
LCCI said the policy “is posing a major threat to the businesses of courier companies and other stakeholders in Lagos state. “Many companies that engage in-house dispatch riders for prompt delivery of sensitive documents and servicing of customer outlets
are currently in a dilemma. Many courier firms and other corporate bodies in the state are now delivering mails on foot,” said a statement signed by Muda Yusuf, the Chamber’s director-general.
“200 cc capacity motorcycles are generally not available in the country as they are in the range of power bikes, not commonly used for mail delivery and other commercial purposes. This scarcity has created room for all manner of malpractices, including falsification and relabelling of lower capacity motorbikes as 200cc and above.”
According to LCCI, the cost of a motorcycle of 200cc capacity and above, where available, is in the region of N500, 000 to N1 million, depending on the brand, which implies that for a firm that needs to replace 10 of the motorcycles, a minimum of N5 million to N10million will be required.
“Many courier companies have upwards of 50 motorcycles. For most of the small players in that sector, this may be the end of the road for their enterprises. Commitment of such resources to the purchase of 200cc motorcycles is a big drain on the resources of courier companies which is itself a low margin business,” Yusuf said.
The Chamber argued further that: “Electronic payment companies rely on the use of motorcycles for prompt servicing and maintenance of the various electronic payment platforms such as the POS terminals located in various locations in the metropolis. The response time of these providers is now at the lowest ebb.
“We submit that the use of 200cc (and above) motor bikes would not add any value to the realisation of the objective of the traffic law, especially in the light of the intense traffic congestion on Lagos roads. If anything, smaller capacity motorbikes are more flexible and better suited for a high traffic environment.
The business of courier is a pick–up and delivery service, often over short distances. Using a 200 cc motorcycle for such service is obviously inappropriate.”
It further added that the grueling bureaucracy of certification and registration of the 200cc motorbikes have created avenues for all manner of malpractices, including touting and that service delivery quality of courier companies has dropped drastically since the enactment of the policy which is taking a toll on other sectors in the state.
“We appreciate, and indeed share the concern of government on the security implications of a liberal motorcycle policy, but there should be a clear distinction between the commercial motorcyclists and corporate organisations providing services for the smooth running of the economy of the state.