Cameroon:Inter-urban bus transport: 70-seater buses transformed into ‘highway taxis’

Overloaded Vatican Bus 4365 of Sunday February 19-2017

It is now a common phenomenon in most inter-urban travel agencies where drivers who ply the roads both by day and night and in complicity with loaders commonly called ‘motorboys’ make several stops along the highway to pick up extra passengers who will not be accounted for in case of road accidents.
In most of these vehicles some kitchen chairs are placed at the middle of the bus to allow these extra passengers sit, some even sit on stairs of the vehicle no matter the inconveniences caused by this practice.
Buses with 70 places end up having 80 and even more. This reporter approached a ‘moto boy’ who works for a travel agency whose name is withheld, he said what they obtain from this practice is fully theirs.

This phenomenon is practiced in almost all travel agencies especially those with 70 seats but on no occasion has security control question the drivers. Instead with the over 20 stops from Bamenda to Douala or Buea, Gendarmes and Police on duty are only interested in collecting money from drivers, they don’t even approach the vehicle but wait for the ‘moto boy’ to hand them their usual 500 FCFA. Most of these vehicles run under high risk with over loading which could lead to disaster in case of emergency. The buses have been transformed into highway taxis, dropping and picking passengers just like township taxis do.
A journey usually undertaken for six hours sometimes take eight hours or more and grumbling passengers have no option than grumble and stay
The National Security therefore has a daunting task to check these overloaded Coasters that ply the national highways but above all officials of travel agencies have to make a comprehensive follow up drivers and punish defaulters

Source:The Median newspaper

%d bloggers like this: