What a man can do, a woman can do better. These words very much sound like a cliche, one that might have even faded as a result of overuse. But truth be told, this statement has never outgrown its purpose. A vivid example of this is found in the simple act of boarding what is popularly known as a Keke Maruwa only to see that the rider is a woman!
When it comes to public transportation in Nigeria, and we dare say, around the world in fact, men are regarded as its spear heads and controllers. It is thus not uncommon to find young guys and even the old ones at the wheels of a 'Danfo' or a 'Keke Maruwa'.
However, this seemingly normal code of conduct in the transport sector has been broken and a new trend is emerging - Women are now boldly and assertively taking over the wheels of public transport vehicles.
One of the means of transport that has been taken over by the womenfolk is the Keke Maruwa. Daily, it is becoming more of a regular sight to find women wielding these tricycles and making a living out of it.
In fully expressing this new societal trend, The Guardian took to interviewing and featuring three Keke queens on the cover of their magazines. These women who were evidently in their prime age have taken to riding the easily maneuvered tricycle to earn a living for themselves.
"Keke has become for many Nigerians, one of the easiest means of transportation because of its ability to manoeuvre the tiniest of spaces on the busy roads and the limited number of people it requires. Although ‘tough business’ women like Lilian Jeresa known as Ebony, a single mother of four and Comfort Olowu popularly known as Madam Yori Yori have taken the wheels of the Keke as a means of livelihood."
As identified by The Guardian, these women are Lilian Jeresa known as Ebony, a single mother of four; Comfort Olowu popularly known as Madam Yori Yori and Dupe Odumuyiwa. The latter even beyond holding the wheels of the tricycle to being a leader in that respective circle.
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In this light, she is the organising secretary, Canoe section, Ejigbo branch of Tricycle Operator Owner Association of Nigeria. The story of these women have inspired many all over the world.
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Beyond these 3 Keke queens who have broken the mold and taken over their community in their zest to survive, there are several others whose lives are channeled to breaking existing frontiers and creating new ones in a society that is generally averse to change. These women, heroic in their small ways, are indeed worth celebrating.
From bike to tricycle, Adijat is gradually riding her way to greatness | Legit TV