Lagos-Ibadan free train ride: After days of low patronage, passengers besiege Iju Station

After days of low patronage recorded on the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge free train service between Monday and Wednesday, passengers besieged Iju Station on Thursday to enjoy the ride to Ibadan.

A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria who monitored the train service on Thursday observed that the number of passengers outnumbered available seats in the train.

NAN reports that a sizeable number of intending passengers had been waiting since 11.00 a.m for the train billed to depart Lagos for Ibadan at 4:00 p.m.

Before 3:00 p.m., a huge crowd of intending passengers had gathered at the station and filled all the available seats in the train with two executive coaches.

Confusion arose when those, who had earlier in the day registered their names to travel on the train, returned a few minutes to 3:00 p.m. to discover that the train had been filled up to capacity with More intending passengers started to troop into the station and begged the officials of the Nigerian Railway Corporation to allow them to stand in the train.

When the entire station was about to be thrown into confusion, the NRC officials had to bend the rules to accede to the request of those who wanted to stand.

Speaking to NAN on phone on the huge turnout of passengers, the Lagos State Railway District Manager, Mr Jerry Oche, who expressed surprise about the sudden turnout of passengers, revealed the station’s plan to increase the number of coaches to accommodate more intending passengers from December 21.

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