THE COMMERCIAL CAPITAL OF NIGERIA, LAGOS IS CURRENTLY UNDERGOING A FACELIFT.
I grew up thinking that the official colour of Lagos –if there is any such thing –was yellow. Every commercial mode of transportation was yellow, cabs were yellow, commercial buses a.k.a Danfo was same, so also the tricycles a.k.a Keke Napep. The colour was so glaring that if your skin wasn’t yellow I felt you were an immigrant from neighbouring states. Right now this is not the story as it so seems that the iconic colour of this great city is subtly being bleached. Is this good news or bad news? Let's find out.
Firstly, the advancement of technology has proven to be the most potent bleach. It has de-saturated the colour as people can now order executive rides using applications on their mobile phones and the cars are certainly not yellow, Tricycles have been relegated to street corners and now the state government has chosen to eradicate the danfo buses from major roads, not to mention the inclusion of the Bus rapid transport a.k.a BRT buses.
If you have been on Lagos roads for at least 30 minutes, you will agree with me that this is certainly a popular site. The state government has chosen to construct new bus terminals as preparation for the lunch of the new lag buses. As soon as this happens, you can bid danfo buses farewell or you may find them competing with keke napeps in street corners –a little more fade.
I am particularly excited about this innovation; it is poised to deliver value to Lagosians and I can’t wait. There are many things that have to stop in this state; I’ve had experiences you may also have had or even worse. I’ve had conductors go away with my balance (change) simply because I forgot it, danfo buses have torn my white designer shirt with their rusty old metals, and I was shocked one time when a conductor almost slapped me because I didn’t have change (the exact fare). Let me not even start with my contempt for these guys but here are a number of things these new buses are going to deliver on:
1. Restore sanity: commuting in Lagos is downright insane. Buses don’t wait, drivers and conductors are many times intoxicated (high) and unkempt, not to mention how they talk to you with so much rude vigor.
2. Eradicate rushing: do you remember the last time you didn’t have to see people rush into a moving bus especially on a rainy evening? You don’t, you only get to see some level of calmness on the BRT queues. Right now danfo buses will say “na dem dey rush us”.
3. Offer more modes of payment: any commercial bus you enter today will not hesitate to chant the mantra “Hold your change, making it imperative for commuters to have the exact fare. The new buses will offer more modes of payment such as POS and more.
4. Make it easier for brands to connect with audience: it is very difficult for brands to target audience in the current commercial buses but with the new lag buses communication will be effortless.
5. Create new jobs: there will be need to recruit people who will issue tickets, maintain the buses, oversee operations and much more –no longer a seemingly lawless venture.
So with these few points of mine, I hope I have been able to convince you and not to confuse you that the colour yellow is set to fade out in the transportation industry of Lagos state, all thanks to the economical advancement and a forward thinking government.