Pas­sen­gers tackle Chisco Trans­port faulty bus

The Punch - - METRO - Oluwatosin Omo­juyigbe

Some pas­sen­gers have crit­i­cised Chisco Trans­port, a firm that runs in­ter­state bus ser­vices, over their al­leged ill­treat­ment.

The af­fected pas­sen­gers had boarded one of the firm’s buses from La­gos State to Aba, Abia State, on De­cem­ber 23, 2019.

PUNCH Metro learnt that the ve­hi­cle, which the pas­sen­gers boarded from the Ji­bowu bus ter­mi­nus in La­gos, broke down at Sagamu, ogun State, a few kilo­me­tres into the jour­ney.

It was gath­ered that the bus driver left the pas­sen­gers on the road around 12am and did not show up un­til around 5am.

one of the pas­sen­gers, Jerry Dou­glas, who spoke with our cor­re­spon­dent, said ef­forts to reach the com­pany to pro­vide an al­ter­na­tive bus proved abortive as it al­legedly shunned ap­peals from the pas­sen­gers, who were forced to pass the night in the cold.

Dou­glas noted that the pas­sen­gers were forced to re­port at the Sagamu Po­lice Sta­tion, whose per­son­nel later ar­rested the driver.

Ac­cord­ing to Dou­glas, the pas­sen­gers did not get to their var­i­ous des­ti­na­tions un­til three days af­ter, adding that he had to spend Christ­mas in hos­pi­tal as his son took ill.

He stated, “I bought tick­ets for my wife, kid and I around noon on mon­day; the ac­tual fare we saw on the firm’s web­site was N9,000 per pas­sen­ger, but on get­ting to the Ji­bowu ter­mi­nus, the lady at the counter said the fare was N13,000 and I bought three tick­ets and went back home.

“We got to the ter­mi­nus around 6pm be­cause the de­par­ture time was 7pm, but as of 9pm, there was no bus in sight. The bus ar­rived around some min­utes past 9pm and pas­sen­gers ques­tioned the con­di­tion of the ve­hi­cle, be­cause it was not look­ing good and the tick­ets that we bought in­di­cated that the bus was fully air-con­di­tioned.

“The com­pany in­sisted that that was the bus that would con­vey us and the pas­sen­gers re­fused to board it, but later some boarded and when I asked for a re­fund, I was told that there was not go­ing to be a re­fund; so, we had no choice but to join the bus.

“Just af­ter the Re­demp­tion Camp around the Sagamu in­ter­change, the bus stopped mov­ing and when we asked the driver, he could not give us any ex­pla­na­tion; he just said there was a fault and that he wanted to see what he could do. That was the last we saw of him around 12am un­til he resur­faced around 5am.

“When he came back, we asked him why he left us on the road in the mid­dle of the night without any ex­pla­na­tion or apol­ogy, but he only told us to wait for an­other bus that was com­ing. We waited for a while and when we did not see any bus, we went to the Sagamu Po­lice Sta­tion to re­port and the driver was ar­rested.

“When we got to the sta­tion, we found out that the driver had been com­mu­ni­cat­ing with the wrong per­son as he did not in­form the man­ager. When we called the man­ager to tell him our plight, he apol­o­gised and promised to do some­thing, but we did not hear from him again un­til the po­lice called and told him that their driver would spend the night at the sta­tion if the firm did not pro­vide an­other bus for us.

“That was when some­one called me around 10am that an­other bus was on its way to con­vey us and when the bus came, it was a 25-pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cle that was also not look­ing good, but we had no choice.

“At that point, the pas­sen­gers with big­ger lug­gage were screened out from fol­low­ing the bus, be­cause the driver said he could not carry more than the weight of the bus; so, the other pas­sen­gers had to stay back.

“We left Sagamu for Aba but we had to make stopovers to ei­ther put wa­ter in the ve­hi­cle’s ra­di­a­tor or do some other things ev­ery 30 min­utes. The driver man­aged the bus to their ter­mi­nus in ow­erri, where an­other bus was pro­vided to con­vey us to Aba. Im­me­di­ately we got to Aba around 1am on De­cem­ber 25, 2019, I had to check my son into hos­pi­tal. The com­pany made my fam­ily spend Christ­mas in hos­pi­tal.”

An­other pas­sen­ger, Leonard Afobe, who had a de­liv­ery to make in Cal­abar, Cross River State, ex­plained that he had to pay to board an­other ve­hi­cle af­ter the bus broke down.

Afobe lamented that the com­pany made him spend extra money on trans­porta­tion.

He said, “I was try­ing to make a de­liv­ery on time, but Chisco put us on an old ve­hi­cle af­ter pay­ing to be con­veyed by a new bus. I paid N13,000 for each of the three tick­ets I bought and I paid for the goods that I was go­ing to de­liver.

“I was sup­posed to de­liver the goods on De­cem­ber 25, but the bus dis­ap­pointed and the owner of the goods said I must find the means of get­ting them to him. I was go­ing to Cal­abar but I de­cided to get to Aba first be­fore tak­ing a char­tered ve­hi­cle to my fi­nal des­ti­na­tion, but the ve­hi­cle did not get far be­fore it stopped.

“The com­pany knew that the ve­hi­cle was not good but it pur­posely brought it out to con­vey us so as to col­lect money from us. Chisco made me to spend extra N120,000 to con­vey the goods to Cal­abar. I want the com­pany to re­fund the money that I used to char­ter an­other ve­hi­cle.”

our cor­re­spon­dent learnt that af­ter the pas­sen­gers’ or­deal went vi­ral on the so­cial me­dia, the Chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of the Fed­eral Com­pe­ti­tion and Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion Com­mis­sion, Ba­batunde Iruk­era, en­gaged the se­nior ex­ec­u­tives of Chisco Trans­port, who promised to com­pen­sate the af­fected

• Stranded pas­sen­gers with the bus

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