Commercial vehicles operators in Jos are making brisk business due to the increase in the volume of passengers traveling out of the state for the Christmas and New Year festivities.
Nigeria News Agency reports that virtually all the motor parks in Jos metropolis are filled to capacity as early as 6 a.m by passengers heading for various destinations in the country.
The Vice Chairman of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) of the motor park located opposite NTA, Jos, Mr Austin Robert, told NAN that the park began to witness an increase in passenger traffic in the first week of December.
Robert said the patronage was so high that by 9.30 a.m, there was no more available vehicle going to Abuja and other routes.
He, however, said that in spite of the influx of passengers, the park had not increased its transportation fares and assured that the charges would not be hiked during the yuletide.
As part of its efforts to make the operations hitch-free, the vice chairman said, the union was holding regular meeting with its drivers to sensitise them on the ills of taking substances that could enhance their driving performance.
According to him, the drivers were told that such practice could endanger their lives and those of the passengers.
He said that the union usually monitored the drivers and that anyone of them found to be intoxicated would not be allowed to drive that day.
Robert advised passengers to desist from the act of putting pressure on the drivers to speed in order to meet up with their various appointments.
Similarly, the Manager of Benue Links Park in Jos, Mr Verbe Tembe, said the park was experiencing increase in the number of passengers traveling for Christmas and New Year.
Tembe also said that the management of the park was meeting with the drivers twice in a week to sensitise them on the ills of drunk driving or driving under the influence of psychotropic substances.
He said the drivers were being monitored to ensure that they complied with the order against drunk driving.
He called on passengers to report any driver they found to be under the influence of any substances, so that the union would immediately recall him.
An Abuja-bound passenger, Malam Abdu Abubakar, commended the operators for not increasing their fares in spite of the high patronage.
I am impressed by this patriotic gesture of the Jos transporters who refused to take advantage of the high patronage to increase the fares. I commend them for maintaining the fares,” Abubakar said.
Similarly, Miss Yop Pam, a passenger going to Benue, commended the transport companies for not increasing the fares and appealed to them to maintain the charges “so that people can travel and see their loved ones”.
Edited by: Abdullahi Yusuf