Some bicycles dealers in Bauchi are making brisk businesses due to increased patronage occasioned by the petrol pump price and transport fare hike.
A check in Bauchi metropolis showed that most workers, students and businesspeople have resorted to cycling since President Bola Tinubu ended the petrol subsidy regime in Nigeria.
Checks at the Central Market Bauchi showed that the demand for new bicycles and repair of old ones increased by about 70 per cent as the number of cyclists kept surging.
Bicycle riding is becoming more popular among the residents as it proves to be cost effective, ease transportation difficulties and improve health conditions.
The trend provided opportunities for bicycles dealers and repairers to make more money.
Mudi Jahun, a bicycle dealer, said that he was recording high sales due to increased patronage of bicycles in Bauchi and adjourning communities.
Mr Jahun said bicycle sales recorded a significant boom with the hike in petrol prices and transport fares.
“We noticed a business boom with an increase in the price of petrol. I sold about two bicycles daily as against before when I hardly sold one bicycle within a week. Bicycles for adults are the most preferred, unlike the ones for the children. We thank God, we are making good sales of bicycles and their spare parts,” Mr Jahun said.
According to Mr Jahun, a bicycle for adults now sells between N25,000 and N30,000. Previously, it cost N20,000.
Corroborating Mr Jahun, Audu Gimba, a bicycle repairer, said he now enjoyed appreciable patronage.
He said many people brought their old bicycles for repair on a daily basis.
“The number of bicycles has increased, even the old ones kept for years at home had been brought for repairs. Before the fuel subsidy removal, I spent the whole day without any customer coming for repairs. Now, many bicycle owners are coming, I’m overwhelmed with work,” said Mr Gimba.
Saminu Musa, a worker, said he resorted to riding a bicycle as he could not afford to buy petrol at N600 or more per litre. Mr Musa noted that most of the automobile owners had jacked up their cars and resorted to either bicycles or public transportation.
“I repaired my bicycle and that of my children. My car is already parked. I can’t afford to buy fuel,” stated Mr Musa.