It is uncommon to see a woman whose daily job is to wash tanker trucks. A young teenager, Chinyere Isaac washes tankers near Umuojima junction, Temple polytechnic road, Aba in Abia State.
Tankers are vehicles designed to load large quantities of liquid or gas on roads.
The 18 year old girl in an interview with BBC says she had washed tankers to the extent she usually see herself washing tankers in her dream.
She decided to wash tankers because her parents couldn’ t afford to send her to school.
” I went to my parents and told them I want to start washing tankers. They asked me why and I told them I want to be able to help them and myself, so they agreed” , she said.
Chinyere revealed that her elder brother also washes tankers and he took it upon himself to train her in cleaning the trucks. She started by rinsing the tankers washed by her brother before she was able to master it and now she can do it by herself.
She disclosed that she started washing tankers at 16 years old. Then, she was only able to wash one truck but she is now able to clean up to three vehicles in a day.
While relating some of the problems she had faced, she said her friends mocked her when they learnt she is into truck cleaning service but some eventually told her she tried by engaging in such tedious job.
Another man scorned her and called her a dumb girl because she washes tankers which caused her to almost break into tears.
She said she isn’ t ashamed of her hustle because it is her source of livelihood.
Chinyere also stated that the work is tedious and dangerous. Sometimes, iron does pierce her hand or she might hit her head on the vehicle while washing it which sometimes causes her to have headache.
” The work is stressful, I will need to fetch water before I start to wash and by the time I finish, my body will begin to ache but I don’ t have a choice” .
Her dream is to become a lecturer but due the financial restraint of her parents, she engages is a truck washer. Her plan is to save money to go to school and if she couldn’ t reach her target, she will use the money to learn a trade but insists she will still further her education and achieve her dream of becoming a lecturer.