The governor of Oyo State, ‘Seyi Makinde, and the Minister of Industry, Trades and Investment, H.E. Adeniyi Adebayo, on Thursday launched a new ride-hailing service in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
Codenamed ‘AFRICAR,’ the new ride-hailing service was launched at a well-attended ceremony l, with over 115 brand new specialized vehicles.
Speaking at the event, Governor Makinde appreciated AFRICAR, noting that choosing Ibadan as its first base in ride-hailing service attests to the business-friendly atmosphere for investors in the state, which was made possible by his administration.
Makinde said that the introduction of the service into Ibadan is in line with his administration’s goal of inviting new investors into the state.
Speaking through his Chief of Staff, Mr. Segun Ogunwuyi, Makinde also said that he is delighted to witness another demonstration of his administration’s commitment to make life comfortable for residents of the state.
He said, “I am very delighted to be at the event of today which is a further demonstration of our administration’s commitment to making life comfortable for our people and thereby improving the socio-economic activities of the citizenry and the state at large.”
Noting that transportation is evidently important for economic activity and social life in a state, the governor added that the current economic status of Oyo State is due to many factors, chief among these factors is the development and continuous improvement of our public transport system.
He added, “The state has witnessed and as a matter of fact, is still witnessing a tremendous growth in the transport sector since the inception of this administration in the areas of transport infrastructures and procurement of vehicles forass transit.”
Makinde said that as part of his administration’s efforts to improve the transportation sector in the state, he has purchased 109 buses for mass transit, tagged ‘Omituntun Bus Mass Transit.’
He also said that he has constructed four bus terminals at Iwo Road, Challenge, and Ojoo, to ease commuting in the state capital.
Congratulating the owners of AFRICAR, the Stallion Group, the governor expressed the hope that the launch will birth more interesting fruits as the group collaborates with his government for the well-being of the people of Oyo State.
Also speaking, the Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, H.E. Adebayo appreciated Stallion Group, a home-grown conglomerate, commending it for adding value to the economy of the country for the past 52 years.
The minister also thanked Governor Makinde for the welcoming environment that has been provided to Africar.
Adebayo added that Africar’s platform has the potential to transform the transportation industry in the state, providing both employment opportunities and low-cost rides.
The Chief Executive Officer, CEO, of AFRICAR, Mr. Sahil Vaswani, said that all of the cars being used for this project are assembled in Lagos at Stallion Group’s Von Plant.
He said Africar, in partnership with the National Automotive Design and Development Council, NADDC, has developed the Bajaj Qute cars used for the new ride hailing taxi.
He said, “This car is assembled in Nigeria by Nigerians and is environmentally friendly, with 50 per cent lower carbon emissions than the average car.”
The event was also attended by the state Commissioner for Works and Transport, Prof. Daud Sangodoyin, who hailed the infusion of a new ride-hailing service into the transportation system in the state.
Other dignitaries at the event were top government functionaries and the executives of AFRICAR.