Oando Clean Energy Limited, LAMATA, introduce electric mass transit buses, in Lagos
As a result of the launch of the Electric-Mass Tansit buses by Oando Clean Energy Limited and the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority, LAMATA, Lagos has joined the list of cities around the world that have embraced electric vehicles.
The project aims to transform the state’s public transport system by creating and implementing a way to a state-wide ecosystem for carbon-free mobility. A three-month Proof-Of-Concept (PoC) phase that tested the viability of electric vehicles for mass transit in Lagos State served as the launchpad for the deployment of the electric buses. Following this, there will be a pilot phase with a larger fleet and more bus routes, and eventually a nationwide deployment that will employ over 30,000 Nigerians.
“This initiative is a major aspect of our vision for transport in Lagos State. We are desirous of having a clean and efficient transport system,” said Abimbola Akinoja, managing director of LAMATA, in a speech at the event.
The event of today demonstrates our desire to involve the private sector in our initiatives so that the typical Lagosian can meet their mobility needs. The partnership between OCEL and LAMATA, a multi-fuel transportation regulatory body for Lagos, allows for the use of EV buses in passenger operations. From the perspective of LAMATA, we are willing to work with the private sector as long as these partners share the same vision as Lagos state. I am thrilled that we have signed an MoU with Oando Clean Energy with the implementation of a PoC as a key deliverable, allowing us to finally include electric buses in our ecosystem, just over a year after they approached us to discuss the possibility of working with us in the deployment of electric buses. With the help of our partnerships, which support this ecosystem, we have worked to produce buses with regenerative braking systems, zero tailpipe emissions, dependable and strong battery and motor systems, and the ability to traverse rough terrain and congested roads.
The company has installed charging stations at each bus depot to ensure smooth operations and to make sure the buses always have a full charge. Additionally, all of the drivers have received in-depth training on how to operate and maintain these buses in cooperation with our partners.
Olalere Odusote, commissioner for energy and mineral resources, added, “Lagos sits on less than 0.4% of Nigeria’s landmass but hosts 12% of Nigerians; that should tell you that this is indeed a crowded city. It is also the smallest state in Nigeria, yet it is the most populous. The unfavourable environment is to blame for a lot of the issues we face today.
According to research, the majority of patients who present to hospitals throughout the State are suffering from respiratory illnesses, which means they are breathing a significant amount of polluted air and causing both direct and indirect losses to the State in the form of lost productivity, lost wages, and medical expenses, to name a few. In addition to the other good steps being taken in the electricity sector, this is yet another step our government is taking to ensure we clean up the environment.
According to Dr. Ainojie ‘Alex’ Irune, President/Chief Executive Officer of OCEL, the idea aims to revolutionise Nigeria’s transport industry. “This is an opportunity for us to revolutionise mobility in our nation and to strengthen regional capacity for the ecosystem of renewable and clean energy,” he said. Although these buses were imported today from all over the world, they will soon be made in Nigeria. We will soon have a large number of locally trained engineers who can run, maintain, and service these buses and other renewable energy equipment. These buses are a first step in our eyes.
“This PoC makes it easier to gather the initial data sets needed to support the development and implementation of EV for local and public transport on the continent. Together with Lagos State, our goal is to look to the future and pave the way for others to follow. We have put in a lot of effort to get where we are, and we are confident in the actions we are taking. I must emphasise that none of this would have been possible without the help of Lagos State, LAMATA, LBSL, Primero, and the Governor, who recognised the importance and necessity of starting this journey.
The Commissioner for Transport, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, effectively represented the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, at the event, saying, “We are here today to write the script for a new future. Climate change, which is defined as a long-term change in temperature and weather patterns, is something that Lagos and Nigeria have recently been experiencing. Such changes 3 can result from both natural events, like variations in the sun’s activity or large volcanic eruptions, as well as human actions. Today, there is no shortage of evidence demonstrating that human activities—particularly the burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas—have been the primary contributors to climate change.
Environmentalists and world leaders have responded positively to this situation by taking swift action to save the planet. The only state in Nigeria that has created and begun implementing a climate action plan is Lagos. In order to achieve net zero emissions by 2050—10 years earlier than the Federal Government’s target of 2060—the plan outlines 26 initiatives covering adaptation and mitigation measures. This project serves as an example of OCEL’s dedication to helping Nigeria meet her ambitious goal of becoming net-zero by 2060, as well as Lagos State’s dedication to becoming net-zero by 2050. In Lagos State, we are actively assisting in the growth of a strong EV ecosystem thanks to our strategic partnership with LAMATA.