By Bayo Bernard
After years of almost redundancy Peugeot Automobile Nigeria Limited has got a new lifeline as Nigeria’s major automaker, after the federal government purchased 360 vehicles from the vehicle manufacturer. The development came after the Kaduna based vehicle maker was made richer to the tune of over N6billion by the Buhari administration.
The firm was contracted to supply 360 Peugeot 506 to Nigeria’s House of Representatives members.
The automobile company has already delivered 200 state of art vehicles to the lawmakers. According to analysts, the automaker has benefited from the use-made- in-Nigeria policy of the President Muhammadu Buhari.
The House of Reps said the 200 vehicles have already been shared to members while the remaining lawmakers will benefit from the second tranche.
Nigerians have been most critical of government’s preference for foreign made vehicles for its officials. Toyota, Mercedes Benz and recently Ford have enjoyed large patronage from various administrations in Nigeria.
For example the Lagos state government led by Governor Akinwumi Ambode has purchased millions of naira worth of Ford vehicles for its top officials. The Nigerian Presidency has also acquired various brands of Mercedes Benz vehicles in its fleet.
Speaking on the development, Chairman, House Committee on Media and Publicity Abdulrazak Namdas said in Abuja, the nation’s capital that over 200 members had been given Peugeot 508 series for “utility services.”
The House of Representatives spokesman also disclosed that by December 31, 2017, all 360 lawmakers would get delivery of their official vehicles. He said arrangement has been made to pay the auto company for the purchase if the vehicles.
“Every member will get a car by the end of this year. The issue is that the payment and supply of the vehicle is being done in installments.
“The House and the company (Peugeot Automobile Nigeria Limited) agreed to this arrangement of paying and supplying in installments.
“Naturally, not all the members can get their cars at the same time and we have explained to them why this cannot be possible,” Namadas said
Analysts insist that the automaker now has a new lease of life as the over N6 billion will further boost its operation.