Thousands of Lagos residents queue up daily to make use of the buses to enjoy lower fares and use the BRT to beat gridlock in the city due to their use of dedicated lanes.
The Lagos State Government said on Monday that it had approved fare increase ranging from 20 per cent to 50 per cent on different routes plied by the buses.
Abiodun Dabiri, Managing Director, Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), told newsmen in Alausa that the new fare structure for regulated bus operators in the state would take effect from March 1.
He said that though the government was mindful of the current financial difficulties residents were going through, it approved the fare increase to save the bus schemes from collapse.
Dabiri said what the bus operators spent on fuel had gone up 71 per cent, oil by 64 per cent and tyre by 90 per cent, threatening their continued operations.
“In view of this and with government’s responsibility to avert a collapse of the franchise scheme, which currently serves over 500,000 commuters daily, government had to consider request by the operators for an upward review of bus fares,” he said.
Dabiri said the current fares charged on some of the schemes had stayed constant for more than six years in the case of some operators.
He said that though the government granted the request for fare increase, it will not allow transport users to do so arbitrarily.
According to him, the operators have also been advised to improve their cost efficiency and effectiveness.
“It will be difficult to pass the entire cost of operations to the consumers, bearing in mind that a lot of the users are in the low income bracket,” Dabiri said.
He appealed to commuters to show understanding as the new fares take effect.
From March 1, commuters from Ikorodu to Mile 12 would pay N100 as against N75.
According to Dabiri, combining two zones like going from Ikorodu to Fadeyi will be N200 instead of N120, while combining three zones – Ikorodu to CMS – will be N300, instead of N200.
Giving a breakdown of the new fares on the LAGBUS routes, its Managing Director, Idowu Oguntona, said that the fare from CMS to Ajah would be N200, up from N150.
He said that commuters from Leventis to Eko Hotel would pay N100 instead of N70, while those going to CMS from Oshodi would pay N150 as against N100.
Oguntona said the new fare regime would affect the 61 routes of LAGBUS.