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Commuters protest in Lagos over planned train fare increase

30 May 2014, 20:29

Lagos - Hundreds of train users on Friday barricaded the entrance of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) Headquarters, Ebute Meta, Lagos, in protest over the proposed increase in train fare.

NRC had on May 26 announced the increase.The corporation said that it would increase the fare for Lagos/Ijoko Mass Transit Train Services (MTTS) from N150 to N230 with effect from June 2.

It said that its new air-conditioned trains scheduled to begin services from June 3 will cost N750 per trip.

The protesting commuters said that the services were poor to cost much.

Their spokesman, Olubolu Oladapo, said that there was nothing impressive in the services to warrant the increase.

Oladapo, a Health Management Consultant, plying the Agbado-Oyingbo Route, said that the increase would be a burden to the commuters.

"The management of the NRC is not taking the masses into consideration.

"To worsen the situation, the management said that children from three years to 14 years will be purchasing tickets; it is unfair.

James Gyang, Deputy Director, Research, Health and Safety in the NRC, told the protesters that the increase was to give commuters improved and safer services.

"There is the need for us to improve in the services.

"We want to make it better and solve the problem of congestion.

"We need to improve and sustain the services, " Gyang said.

He appealed to commuters to be patient and accept the decision.

Nyats Jatau , the Commissioner of Police, Railway Police  Command, urged the peaceful protesters to co-operate with the NRC.

 “The director has said that five of you should attend a meeting with the management to discuss the way forward.

"l urge others to go for their day’s jobs in peace.

"Any breach of peace will attract an appropriate penalty,’’ Jatau said.

-     NAN

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