The recent slash in the price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly called petrol by the federal government may not have any effect on transport fares as commercial vehicle drivers says that the reduction is not significant enough to necessitate a fare slash.
A cross section of the drivers who spoke to Shipping Position Weekly in Lagos last week said that although the 50 kobo reduction in the pump price of petrol is a welcome development, because according to them the reduction is nothing compared to what it cost to put the vehicles on the roads every day.
Acknowledging that even though very negligible, the reduction is still in their favour, they however explained that there are other factors that contribute to the daily routine of commercial vehicle operation.
According to them, the different illegal charges that are being impose don them on daily basis have made a mince meat of the 50 kobo reduction. They fingered illegal collection by street urchins; popularly called “area boys”, compulsory levies by the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and illegal collections by Policemen.
However, reports form across the country indicate that most filling stations, especially in Abuja and the northern part of the country are still selling at the old rate of 70 kobo per litre.
In response to this, the Directorate of Petroleum Resources last week ordered the closure of at least 10 filling stations in the federal capital territory for selling above the stipulated price of 70 kobo.