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Cowry card remains payment method for state-owned transport systems- LAMATA boss



The Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) on Sunday reaffirmed that the travel Cowry card remains the only acceptable means of payment for all state-owned transport systems.

The Managing Director of LAMATA, Mr Kolawole Ojelabi, said this in an interview with our correspondent in Lagos.

This is following complaints by commuters that some mini shuttle buses insist on collecting cash instead of allowing them tap in with their cowry cards.

Ojelabi said that feedback was crucial for government to understand loopholes in the service it provides.

“When you see a thing like that just snap the bus and send to me, the only way for us to know is to have information and we call the drivers in and we’ll deal with them.

“The whole essence of putting the monitor there is for you to use your cowry card, those people collecting money are cutting corners. So, please send us the numbers of the buses.

“Also, about passengers having to tap in another BRT bus because the tap device of the bus to their destination is not working is something I consider strange.

This is our number, 09099526282, we need this feedbacks,” he said.

Some residents shared their experiences in separate interviews with NAN.

Mrs Busayo Bolarinwa, a businesswoman, said that the act was common among some mini bus drivers who ply Costain, Shitta and Lawanson.

“I top up my cowry card monthly to serve me for the month, so, it’s always annoying when some drivers ask for cash.

“In some cases, the driver will insist you tap in from another bus then come back to enter the bus, so, I believe that some of their tap in devices are faulty which should be fixed,” she said.

Similarly Mr Dozie Anayo, a sales representative, said:“ I was heading to Ikeja under bridge to get to Egbeda, it was late that day and I couldn’t get a direct bus to Egbeda, I was surprised when the driver said we should pay in cash.

“I know there was no way that money I paid got to the state government, so, imagine if I didn’t have any cash on me. My friend said he had experienced same too on mini buses,” he said.

Mr Idris Olabisi, a Cleric, said most mini shuttle buses do this late in the evening.

“I think once it’s late in the evening they believe they have worked for government during the day and evening delivery was theirs.

“My experience was at the bus terminal at Marina, I entered Eko Hotel shuttle mini bus from there, I brought out my card but I was told to pay in cash,” he said.

Aderonke Ojediran

NEWSVERGE, published by The Verge Communications is an online community of international news portal and social advocates dedicated to bringing you commentaries, features, news reports from a Nigerian-African perspective. A unique organization, founded in the spirit of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, comprising of ordinary people with an overriding commitment to seeking the truth and publishing it without fear or favour. The Verge Communications is fully registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as a corporate organization.



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