Lagos Commercial Bus Drivers Set to Commence 7 Days Strike on Monday | Lagosians Activate Trekking Mode

  • Lagos State commercial drivers to commence strike over excessive extortion and harassment of its members.
  • The commercial drivers have presented a list of demands to the government before they can suspend the strike.
  • The strike which is set to commence on Monday will force Lagosians into trekking and may cause a big blow to Lagos economy.

L(caps)agos State commercial bus drivers also known as yellow bus drivers say they are set to commence 7 days strike and boycott transport services across the Lagos metropolis. The strike is in protest of excessive extortion of the bus drivers by the managements of the Lagos State parks and garages.

Lagos Commercial Bus Drivers Set to Commence 7 Days Strike on Monday | Lagosians Activate Trekking Mode

In a press release by the Joint Driver's Welfare Association of Nigeria (JDWAN), the drivers decried high levels of subjugation and violence against its members by the park management in the state.

The National chairman of the association, Comrade Abiodun Akintade, blamed the extortion of the drivers by park boys also known as Agbero and the security personnel as the cause of inflation, increase in the cost of food and cost of living Lagosians have seen in recent years in comparison to other states.

"Daily, we lose half of our income to the motor park boys. They leave us with no choice than to go on seven days protest and boycott services," the JIDWAN chairman said.

The industrial action will be embarked on by the drivers of the yellow buses (danfo), minibuses (Korope), and coaster buses. There is no report yet about the stance of taxi drivers.

The Demands by Lagos State Drivers Association

The Lagos commercial drivers union wants the government to stop the harassment, illegal extortion, and violent intimidation of its members with guns, broken bottles, and cutlass, by thugs and security officials.

The drivers demand that parks only collect money for one passenger instead of three passengers per trip they have been paying. The drivers' union also wants to pay only for government tickets and stop paying money to the Agberos and park thugs.

They added that the Lagos state government should provide them with an official bus stop to minimize their continuous encounter with law enforcement officers' harassment.

BBC Pidgin announced that talks are ongoing between the JDWAN and the Lagos state government to resolve the issue but at the time of this report, there is no indication that the discussion had yielded a positive outcome.

How the Commercial Bus Drivers' Strike May Impact Lagosians

Lagos is the largest city in Africa and one of the largest in the world in case of population. The city's population is estimated to be between 15-20 million. Despite being blessed with a lot of infrastructure and good road networks, transportation remains one of the major economic challenges in Lagos.

Besides high traffic jams that can cost one several hours on the road, Lagosians have experienced a scarcity of commercial vehicles and a very high cost of transportation recently. It is the norm to see large crowds in the morning of every working day waiting desperately for vehicles.

Since the Lagos state government banned the use of commercial motorcycles also known as okada on its major roads and around the heart of the city, the only dependable means of transportation are the yellow buses.

This means that if the strike begins, many Lagosians who do not have private vehicles will find it hard to go to work and engage in their normal business. This in turn may have serious economic consequences on businesses and Lagos state in general.

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