The operator of the Lagos Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), Primero Transport Services Limited, said on Thursday it had secured the state government’s approval to increase its fares across all routes with effect from Friday.
The BRT operator had withdrawn its services since Monday over losses occasioned by COVID-19 new transport guidelines that mandated it to commute only 20 passengers per trip instead of 70.
The Managing Director of the company, Fola Tinubu, told journalists on Friday that the management of the firm had decided to increase its pricing effective from Friday.
He said: “We are going to increase our pricing effective from tomorrow, Friday, May 29. We agreed on this after our talk with the Lagos State government.
“Everywhere commuters are paying N200 for a trip, it is going to be N300 and everywhere commuters are paying N300 per trip, it is going to be N500.
“We are increasing our fares. We have secured the permission of the regulator (Lagos State Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA).”
He said the firm understood the plight of the people and the economic situation, but the step became imperative to keep serving the commuters diligently and to provide a world-class service for them.
Tinubu added: “We are doing this not to punish anybody or to victimize anybody but because of the circumstances we found ourselves forced us to do it.
“We need to make sure the company is on a sound financial footing, and if we don’t do this, the buses will not be available in the long run and there will be no way for us to fix buses and bring new buses.
“The business must be on a solid financial footing. Without this, the company cannot survive, and if the company does not survive, it will even cost commuters more in the long run.
“We understand that this is going to put some hardship on people but if we don’t do this and the company goes under, it will even cost the people more.”
He added that the number of passengers on the buses would also increase to 42 with no passenger standing on the buses as against 20 earlier approved by the government to curb the spread of COVID-19.