Many dealers of fairly used imported cars otherwise known as “tokunbo” in Kano have resorted to other businesses since the Federal Government banned the importation of vehicles through the land borders.
Some of the dealers said on Thursday that they found it necessary to shift to other businesses in order to survive the current economic recession.
The dealers said that the Federal Government’s ban on importation of vehicles through the land borders has negatively affected their business, forcing many to switch to other businesses.
One of the dealers, Alhaji Nura Sheka, said he had been in the business for the past 10 years but never had it so bad like this year, following the introduction of the new policy.
He said, “I lost four cars because I could not clear them before the deadline given by the government to clear our goods and the ones I have on ground have not been sold due to lack of patronage.”
Another dealer, Alhaji Haruna Babba, said following the introduction of the new policy, he had since joined his brother at the Sabon Gari Market where they were currently selling food items.
He said, “I can no longer rely on a business which has no future anymore. I have some cars on display in my boss’s shop at Olusegun Obasanjo Way in the metropolis.”
Babba said that his decision to take to food business was borne out of his belief that the business would always be profitable because people must eat under whatever situation.
“Business of food items is profitable and thriving because people must eat under whatever situation they find themselves,” he said.
Babba said that the few who were still in the business had to travel to Lagos to clear their imported vehicles, pointing out that most of those who remained in the business were used to Lagos.
Alhaji Ja’afat Jikamshi said most of the car dealers who switched to other businesses were those with small capital.
“Some dealers who cannot go to Lagos, now prefer to buy used cars from people in the town, repair them and sell to interested buyers,” Jikamshi said.
According to him, there were many other dealers who were happy with the new policy.
He said that such dealers found it easier and less stressful to go and conduct their business in Lagos because of its proximity.
“Even though the recession has adversely affected the business, many car dealers are still happy with the new policy as it is less stressful for them,” Jikamshi said.