Passengers groan over hike in fares, gridlock

Passengers groan over hike in fares, gridlock
11th August 2023
Deborah Sanusi, Temitope Aina and Gbenga Oloniniran
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Commuters heading towards the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway area are lamenting the sudden hike in transport fares by commercial drivers plying Berger, Arepo, Magboro, Mowe, Ibafo, and other areas along the road.

PUNCH Metro learnt that bus drivers have increased fares blaming the removal of fuel subsidy and increased movement towards Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

A passenger simply identified as Adewale said he paid N1,000 from Berger to Magboro instead of the usual N400.

“On a usual day, I spend N400 from Berger to Magboro, but today I paid N1,000,” Adewale said.

Another passenger identified as Adewunmi said on a usual day, she spends N500 from Ketu to Mowe, but the fare increased to N700 on Thursday.

“It was a rude shock when I heard the driver say that the fare was N700. Almost everybody on the bus exclaimed because the price is normally N500. We didn’t have a choice but to pay. But I also heard a man say that the price might increase tomorrow,” Adewunmi said.

Also speaking, a passenger from Oshodi to Mowe, who identified herself as Joy, said, “I was surprised when I heard the new transport fare. I was not with enough money so I was very disturbed.

“I had to call home for somebody to send an extra N1,000 to me so I could use it to balance up my transport fare. I take Mowe for N800 or N1, 000 but today I paid N1,300. The situation is unbearable.”

Another passenger, who did not disclose his name, said, “I will just sleep at the RCCG Camp this night because I can’t keep paying this amount to and fro.”

While speaking with a bus driver, Wale, PUNCH Metro learnt that the hike in price was a result of high demand and movement of people towards the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

He said “The demand is very high because people are moving towards the Ibadan-Expressway. We all live in Lagos and we know how difficult the current economic situation is. I have to do anything to survive.”

Our correspondents also observed that many passengers were heading towards the Redemption Camp along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway for the ongoing Annual Convention of the Redeemed Christian Church of God themed “Beyond Expectation.”

The traffic jam was, however, also recorded in areas like Ojodu, Otedola and adjoining routes.

Reacting, the Lagos Sector Commander, Federal Road Safety Corps, Babatunde Farinloye, said the gridlock was due to the religious activities ongoing along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

Farinloye said, “I’m even inside the traffic for like three hours. It’s due to the church programmes ongoing on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. The RCCG is holding a programme and two other churches are also doing their own. It’s due to the traffic volume towards that area. I had to call men of the NSCDC to join us

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