Some regular users of the Bus Rapid Transport Services, popularly known as BRT, in Ikorodu have urged the Lagos State Government to address the waiting time commuters had to queue before boarding the buses.
The commuters told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday that to queue for over two hours to board the BRT bus at the Ikorodu Park, was not a good development.
The commuters added that the queuing time for boarding the BRT buses at Ikorodu constituted a health risk to those who regularly patronise them.
Mr Yomi Ogunade, a trader, whose shop is in Lagos Island, told NAN that he queued for over two hours waiting to board a bus from Ikorodu to CMS through the Yaba route.
“I got here at 8.34 a.m., but only boarded the BRT at 10.43 a.m. And I can tell you that this has been a regular occurrence for months now.
“There is an urgent need for Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode, to address the time we have to queue before boarding buses here,’’ he said.
Alhaja Ramat Ayomide, an Economics teacher in a public school, said the operators of the BRT needed to increase the number of buses to the Ikorodu route.
She told NAN that her blood pressure, usually goes up every morning due to queuing up and stress she had to undergo to enter the bus.
“I hope our government considers the long time we wait to enter the BRT. This is economically disadvantageous to the state’s purse and even her image.
“Many commuters no longer have confidence and joy to use the BRT, hence they have moved to patronise the commercial buses.
“And the operators of the BRT will lose huge revenue when those who patronise it are decreasing in large numbers by the day,’’ she said.
Ayomide also said none provision of seats where those queuing could relax before entering the bus, gave the impression that the management of the BRT was insensitive.
At the BRT bus-stop in Ketu, a commuter boarding to get to Fadeyi, Mr John Okoro, told NAN that he was on the queue, on the “standing side” for over two hours on Wednesday.
“Those who preferred to seat from here will have to queue longer, so most of us just join the standing queue to shorten our waiting to board time,” he said.
Another user at Anthony bus-stop, Mrs Helen Egunjobi, a banker, said she never hoped to get to seat from there because the buses were always over-crowded.
“The moment I buy my ticket, I just take the bus that stops at that moment,’’ she said, adding “the buses that stop to pick passengers here are never having seats except on Sunday only.”
At the Fadeyi Park, Mr Akin Ajibade, a civil servant, criticised the policy disallowing Fadeyi-bound BRT buses to proceed onward to CMS.
He said that those using the bus to CMS from Fadeyi suffer a lot of stress and queuing period, saying that “it is as if only two buses were dedicated to that bus-stop to CMS”.
Similarly, a staff of the National Theatre at Iganmu, who did not want to be mentioned, told NAN that boarding the BRT in the evenings back to Ikorodu was hellish.
“Sometimes, we wait for more than two hours and half for an empty bus to come.
“Many of us have resort to standing in already full buses coming from CMS, instead of waiting for an empty bus to come,” she said.
To Mr Tolulope Akinmakinde, a physiotherapist, said those who could bear to wait for long to enter the BRT at Ikorodu were not engaged in exercise but physical torture to their bodies.
“I particularly pity the aged that have to seat almost on the ground because of the pains they feel while queuing for the bus to come.
“And I do know that people with high blood pressure don’t find the waiting experience easy for their health.
“The need to provide seats for some commuters on queue and ensure that queuing time is not more than 20 minutes at most is very important,” he said.
Attempt to get an official at the BRT Ikorodu Park to react did not yield tangible results.
However, one of the bus officers at the Ikorodu Park, who did not want to be mentioned, said that “management is looking into this challenge and hopefully commuters will soon stop to queue for long to board our buses.’’
NAN reports that Primero Transport is the operators of the BRT at Ikorodu and that the last bus-stops of the buses were Mile 12, Maryland, CMS, and CMS through Yaba.
The BRT bus system is, however, regulated by the Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) under the Lagos State Government.