By Jonathan Ugbal
Transport fares in the northern senatorial district of Cross River state have hiked over the course of the past four weeks due to increase in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) popularly known as ‘fuel’ or ‘petrol’ CrossRiverWatch can authoritatively report.
Across the five local government areas that make up the senatorial district, fares have hiked between 30% to 60% with the most notable being the fare for travelers plying the Lishikwel-Bendi-Obudu-Utugwang-Abuochiche-Igoli road which connects Obanliku, Obudu, Bekwarra and Ogoja local government areas and Igoli-Okuku road linking Ogoja and Yala local government areas.
First hand findings by CrossRiverWatch reveal that Lishikwel to Bendi which use to range between 50 and 70 Naira is now between 80 and 100 Naira.
Bendi to Obudu main town formerly 100 is now between 150 and 200 depending on the time of the day and number of passengers.
Utanga to Obudu has also hiked from 400 and 500 to between 600 and 750 depending on the time of the day on motorcycle.
Obudu main town to Utugwang usually between 100 and 150 Naira is now between 200 and 250 Naira with same applicable to Utugwang to Abuochiche.
Obudu to Abuochiche which is usually between 200 and 300 Naira is now 400 flat in a commercial car and between 550 and 600 on motorcycle.
Abuochiche to Igoli which previously was 100 Naira is now 200 Naira flat with Igoli to Okuku increased from 150 to between 250 and 300 Naira.
More findings by CrossRiverWatch revealed only the NNPC fuelling station located at Abakpa junction in Ogoja local government dispenses fuel at the government approved 87 Naira while others sell at above 150 Naira per litre.
This, according to drivers who spoke with CrossRiverWatch is the reason for the hike in transport fares.
One who simply gave his name as Samuel says a meeting of commercial drivers was held in Calabar a few days ago with the upward review of transport fares for passengers travelling out of Calabar the predominant matter discussed.
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