Hundreds of commuters were yesterday stranded on the Mile 2-Badagry expressway in Lagos following the protest embarked on by commercial bus drivers in the area over what they referred to as extortion and harassment by members of the different transport unions, the police and officials of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA).
The drivers alleged that touts and security officials had been intimidating and extorting money from them.
One of the drivers, Femi Arowolo, said they paid N1,000 at Agbara park in the morning and another N1,000 at Iyana-Sashi, Okokomaiko and Iyana-Oba, in addition to the N1,000 they paid in the evening, to be allowed to operate.
“This is aside the sum of N100 paid to them on every trip made and additional N200 paid to the police at every bus stop,’’ he said.
The drivers vowed to resist the act with all their might, insisting that the colossal damage done to their vehicles was becoming too many and that they were no longer going to tolerate it.
The drivers’ action left commuters on that route stranded for three days running.
Most of the residents were forced to go to their business places on commercial motorcycles, also known as okada, while those who could not afford the exorbitant fares trekked many kilometers to their destinations.
Some of the passengers lamented their plight, saying the protest further added pressure on their day-to-day activities.
When contacted on the development, the police public relations officer, Lagos State command, Muyiwa Adejobi, said he was not aware of the matter, but promised to get back to our correspondent after his findings