The President of Shippers Association Lagos State (SALS), Rev Jonathan Nicole, has described the high importation of damaged vehicles by Nigerians as a self-help geared towards improving the lives of the citizens.
Nicol said this last week in a chat with Shipping Position Daily in Lagos.
Statistics indicate that, more than 50% of imported used vehicles coming into Nigeria have different degrees of damages.
Speaking on this, Nicol said that refurbishing the damaged cars is like binging in a Completely Knock Down(CKD) and assembling them as new ones which according to him, should be encouraged.
“If you look at the cars on Lagos roads, you don’t see damaged vehicles on Lagos roads; some of them undergo a lot of refurbishing. So the refurbishing is as good as you bringing your CKD into the country and assemble them as a new vehicle when you know it is a knock-down”
Nicol however blamed the high rate of importation of damaged vehicles into the country on the government’s inability to help its citizens.
“So if I get a car for $500 and I can still use it for like two to three years when I am done repairing it, what them stops me from buying such a car”
“Our country is not even in a position to provide us with transportation, the roads are terribly bad, so the vehicles we bring is on a safe-help bases. Government is not giving anybody anything, they are thinking if taking something from people are gives nothing in return and it is not supposed to be so”
He however reiterated the need for the government to encourage importers of vehicles, since, according to him, they don’t demand any foreign exchange from the government to do their businesses
“We don’t have anything free in this country, so the self-help has been with Nigerians for so long. If they bring used vehicles with their own money asking nothing from the government in form of foreign exchange, I think we should encourage Nigerians to do so”
“When they bring in the accident vehicles, they take it to the workshop, normally when you buy a new car and it has an accident you will still take it to the workshop. So there is nothing wrong with is as far as you pay the duty” he concluded.