Right-Hand Traffic (RHT) is the practice of keeping to the right side of the road in bidirectional traffic. In the same way, Left-Hand Traffic (LHT) refers to the practice of keeping to the left side of the road in bidirectional traffic. An elementary rule of the road, it is worthwhile knowing which side of the road to drive before attempting to drive in foreign countries.
People in Nigeria follow right hand traffic rule. Countries that implement RHT almost always use left-hand drive (LHD) vehicles. The steering wheels of these cars are placed on the left-hand side, and therefore the driver sits on the left side of the car. You go around roundabouts in counterclockwise direction.
Nigeria is one of the most populated countries in Africa, with a fast growing economy. The demand for used imported cars is ever increasing as well. You can find a wide selection of affordable LHD vehicles to suit your needs on CarNaija.com. CarNaija offers not just vehicles, but also insurance, loans and spare parts for your vehicles at pocket-friendly prices. It also helps you import vehicles of your choice from Dubai and other Middle East countries, saving you the hassles of liaising, documentation, transferring of ownership, shipping, etc. So, the next time you think of cars, bikes, or trucks, do visit CarNaija.com for a whole lot of interesting deals!
While LHD vehicles are more popular in the world and are used in 165 countries and territories, the remaining 75 countries and territories follow LHT, and hence prefer RHD vehicles. In 1919, 104 of the world's territories were LHT and an equal number were RHT. From 1919 to 1986, 34 of the LHT territories switched to RHT.
Historically speaking, well before cars were invented, all traffic used to follow the left-hand traffic rule. Most people, being right-handed, found it easier to mount their horses from the left. It made sense to climb from the side of the road rather than from the middle, hence they chose the left-hand rule. At the same time, the right hand would be free for greetings or for defense (by holding a sword).
However, when Napoleon came to power, he began changing the left-hand rule to right-hand to suit his own requirements. He being left-handed, preferred to stay on the right side of the road with his sword braced in his left-hand, ready for attack or defense. So he introduced the right-hand system in countries or territories he conquered.
The French Revolution also contributed to popularizing the right-hand traffic rule. The farmers in France were earlier forced to travel on the right side of the road while the aristocrat travelled on the left side. Post the revolution, travelling on the right side became a symbol of freedom that quickly spread to other European countries.
The United Kingdom, however, was not affected by this change, being an isolated island nation, just like other island nations, such as Japan and Indonesia. They continued being LHT nations.
The French introduced RHT to its colonies in Africa, while the British and Portuguese colonies followed LHT. The British introduced LHT to West Africa. But since all of the countries formerly part of this colony bordered former French RHT jurisdictions, they switched to RHT post decolonization. These countries included Ghana, Gambia, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria.
Presently, about 41 countries and territories in Africa follow right-hand traffic (RHT), while only 14 African countries and territories practice left-hand traffic (LHT). Below is a list of African countries that follow RHT and a list of countries that follow LHT.
Countries following RHT in Africa:
4 Burkina Faso
7 Cape Verde
8 Central African Republic
11 Côte D'Ivoire
12 Democratic Republic Of Congo
15 Equatorial Guinea
31 Republic Of Congo
34 Sierra Leone
36 South Sudan
38 São Tomé And Príncipe
41 Western Sahara
Countries following LHT in Africa:
2 Eswatini (Swaziland)
10 South Africa