Regional News of Thursday, 17 July 2014
In Tamale, the capital of the Northern Region, the most common means of transport is by motorbike. Children ride on it to school, market women to their various trading places and nurses to work.
In fact, the motorbike is arguably the most preferable way of travel for people in the city. Unlike other cities in southern Ghana, it is quite characteristic of Tamale and a lovely spectacle at that, especially in the early mornings, to see large numbers of motorbikes whizzing along the streets and roads in the metropolis.
The Yamaha motorbike is one of the favourite ones seen on the streets. To make owners and patrons handle the bike with ease, an international training programme aimed at exposing them to the proper use and maintenance of the bike has been held in Tamale. Participants in the training programme were drawn from all areas of the Northern Region.
The training programme was also intended to improve the skills and knowledge of users of Yamaha motorbikes. The participants were taught operational and maintenance techniques that enable the motorbike to perform at ultimate capacity. Yamaha motorbikes have been on the Ghanaian market since 1970 and has proven over the years as a bike of choice for many people.
Experts from Japan
The training programme was dubbed Ghana Yamaha Riding Academy (GYRA), an initiative of Japan Motors, dealers in Yamaha Motorbikes.
At the launch of the GYRA, a consumer finance scheme aimed at helping workers to own brand new Yamaha motorbikes was also set in motion.
The scheme, known as "Own a Yamaha Motorbike," is a partnership between Stanbic Bank of Ghana and Japan Motors.
Under the partnership deal, Stanbic Bank would pre-finance the motorbikes on behalf of interested clients, who would then secure the motorbikes from Japan Motors. Aside the pre-financing product put in place by Stanbic Bank, Japan Motors will provide anyone who buys a Yamaha motorbike with a free helmet, a free three-month third party insurance or a free one-month comprehensive insurance package.
The Head of Personal and Business Banking of Stanbic Bank, Mr Benjamin Mensah, said the pre-financing product was for all workers, both in the formal and informal sectors of the economy, who want to own brand new Yamaha motorbikes.
He said Stanbic Bank decided to partner Japan Motors to help workers get back home easily after the close of work instead of staying in traffic over long periods.
The General Manager in charge of Sales and Marketing of Japan Motors, Imad Ghorayeb, said Yamaha motorbikes were the most trusted brand worldwide.
He said they were affordable, durable, easy to maintain and had low fuel consumption.