Primero Transport Services Limited, operator of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in Lagos, said that it had sacked no fewer than 300 drivers in the past year, to ensure the safety of its commuters. Mr Fola Tinubu, Managing Director of the firm, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, on Sunday, that as part of its efforts to further ensure safety, the firm was one of the foremost transport companies to use speed gadgets to monitor drivers’ speed to ensure that they did not exceed speed limits.
“We have sacked over 300 drivers in the last one year for different reasons. “The safety of our commuters is paramount to us and also our assets have to be protected because to replace a bus right now, you are talking about almost a minimum of N70 million. “It is better we protect them and we are very particular about that,” Tinubu said.
The managing director said that the firm had also shown serious commitment to staff training, especially the drivers of the high-capacity buses. “We are very particular about training our drivers and we will continue to train them. We also do health checks for them every six months, and we do eye tests”, he said.
On the Cowry card, he said that although the e-Card was a Lagos State Government initiative, it would work better with time as efforts were being made to perfect it. He further said that the firm was working to provide an efficient and effective transport system that would also be responsive to commuters’ demands and needs.
Tinubu said: “We are bringing vehicle parts worth almost a billion naira into the country and should come in by the end of June or early July, so that we can fix all the buses that are down. “We want to put more buses on the road and make people’s lives easier as we have over 200 buses on the road now.
“We believe that probably by July or August, we will have over 300-350 buses on the road daily because, by then, the parts will have come in for us to fix buses. “We are working to provide a world class transport service, the main reason we were set up, and we will provide that world class service. We will do everything in out power to ensure that we provide the world class service to the commuters”.
He called for commuters’ patience and cooperation, as the firm was working assiduously to reduce the waiting time to less than between 10 to 15 minutes at bus shelters. “I know waiting at the bus shelter for an hour or more to board a bus can be very disappointing, especially when you are going to work; but we are working to reduce the waiting time to less than between 10 to 15 minutes. “We are working on this and doing everything humanly possible to ensure that we satisfy the yearnings and aspirations of our commuters,” Tinubu added.