Public transport mini buses park to pick up passengers at Ojodu Berger bus terminal in Lagos, on September 8, 2020. – The Nigerian government has dumped a decade-long pricing regime for petrol and electricity allowing marketers to fix prices resulting in anger and tension in the oil-rich Africa’s most populous country of 200 million people. (Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP)
Despite its role as the engine of economic growth, an indigenous automobile manufacturer, Chinedu Oguegbu, has said the lack of an efficient transport system frustrates wealth creation in Nigeria.
Oguegbu, who described transportation in Nigeria as a big hassle moving from one point to another, said the country’s automotive policy when signed into law would serve as an engine of economic gains.
Speaking at the official launch of the OMAA range of mini-buses in Abuja, he expressed excitement that the model of vehicles have been simplified as much as possible, offering custom products that customers or end-users can adapt to their unique needs.
With a novel innovation in place, the range of mini-buses is expected to run on petrol, compressed natural gas (CNG), or Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), with commercial transportation being one of the critical sectors in economic and social integration.
Oguegbu, who doubles as the Founder of OMAA Global, expressed optimism that the automotive brand will give transporters positive return on their investments, as running on gas is cheaper than petrol and the parts are readily available. “This is the opportunity, the reason we are building OMAA. We are working with technical partners across the globe,” he added.
He said the journey of the brand did not start today, having been in the automotive industry for almost 20 years, working with global original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) from France, Japan, Korea and China.
Oguegbu said the firm is currently finalising its assembly operations. “This November, we will commence commercial deliveries of OMAA vehicles in large volumes. Next, we will have a phased migration from SKD to CKD localizing components, up-skilling staff and contributing to the burgeoning automotive ecosystem.”
He said the brands are also designed and built for other regions, and gives customers the choice to order vehicles that meet their specific requirements, which would result in considerable cost savings as they don’t pay for unnecessary features.
He expressed optimism that there is a huge commercial and social opportunity that would definitely impact millions of lives, adding that his team is open to collaboration, building partnerships, and investing in the ecosystem to ensure a better future for Africa.
For fuel system and power delivery, the OMAA bus comes as a single or dual offering (dual fuel engine system), which implies that customers can have the bus sold to them as either premium motor spirit (PMS), CNG or LPG. It comes in manual transmission, while plans for the automatic transmission version are underway.
In terms of safety and ruggedness, it has a drum brake disc technology and solid suspension systems comparable to other competing brands in the local market.
For the exterior, there is a central lock key system; the tyres sit on alloy wheels or the conventional steel wheels, taking into consideration the peculiar rough roads in the country today.
On daylight or night visibility, OMAA boasts of LED lamps, the high mount brake light with the latest timeless design. Interior-wise, customers are at liberty to decide which seat choices to make, as it comes in three variants including fabrics or leather.
For passengers comfort while the journey lasts, OMAA boasts an all-round air-conditioning system both front and rear that are also adjustable from the rear in addition to the rear view mirror.
The features mentioned are in addition to other features in other vehicles like the anti-lock braking system (ABS), electronic brake distribution (EBD) system.
Customers can also buy any of the OMAA buses with or without a DVD, the preferred size of the LCD, or the reverse camera, and are guaranteed timely delivery within a period of one to four month pre-order notice at very competitive prices, which also attract very reasonable discounts.