Passengers stranded as BRT drivers down tools over pay - PUNCH
JANUARY 15, 2024
BY Samuel Bolaji
Passengers using the Lagos State Bus Rapid Transit were stranded on Sunday as drivers of one of the companies operating the service, Primero Transport Services Limited, embarked on a strike over alleged non-payment of their December salary.
Our correspondent, who visited the Ikorodu BRT terminal, noticed long queues of passengers at all boarding stops at the terminal, waiting for buses to arrive.
A passenger, who simply gave his name as Sam, said he had been waiting in one of the queues for almost two hours with no bus in sight.
“Many passengers have left the queue to board yellow buses. You know how those ones take advantage of this type of situation. I heard that they’ve increased their fares because they can see passengers stranded here,” he added.
Asked if he was aware of why BRT buses were not coming, Sam said he was not aware “and no one has come to address us. We’re just here waiting endlessly.”
Speaking with The PUNCH in a telephone chat, a staffer of Primero TSL, who did not want his name mentioned because he had no authorisation to speak on the matter, said drivers with the company were on strike.
“The strike started yesterday (Saturday). They are on strike because their December pay has not been given to them,” he said.
Asked how long the strike was likely to last, the Primero employee said, “The matter may be resolved tomorrow (today). I don’t think it will linger for too long.”
Efforts to reach Primero’s Managing Director, Mr Fola Tinubu, were unsuccessful as calls to his telephone were not answered and a text message sent to his phone had not been replied to as of the time of filing this report. Also, an inquiry email sent to Primero’s official email address had yet to be replied to as of press time.
Also, efforts to reach the Managing Director, Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority, Mrs Abimbola Akinajo, were unsuccessful as calls to her telephone line went unanswered and a text message sent to her had yet to be replied to as of the time of filing this report.