The first time I had a journey above 200 kilometers (inter-regional) in Nigeria was when I traveled from Ibadan (south-west Nigeria) to Awgu-Enugu (south-east Nigeria) for my National Youth Service Corp Scheme (NYSC). My visit to the town of Abraka in Delta state, Nigeria few days ago was my second distant inter-regional travel.
I started my journey from Lagos to Benin on board Iyare Motors (I wasn’t paid for the advert though), the bus park/terminal was somehow strange to me comparing it with the normal National Road Transport Workers’ (NURTW) park that is prominent in Lagos and other parts in South-West of Nigeria. Customer service at the park is commendable. I paid #1700 for an air-conditioned bus for my journey; I had the choice of paying for a non-a/c bus at the rate of #1000. I was rather astounded with these fares because the journey from Lagos to Ibadan which is four-times less the length of Lagos-Benin costs #1000 in a God-help-me-get-to-my-destination-safely (rickety) bus. I see the Iyare motors’ rate extremely cheap. From that, I deduced and concluded that the NURTW has been putting-knife-to-the-pockets of Nigerians, giving us extremely poor services at high cost.
My journey to Benin was hassle-free. The driver of the bus was mindful of the poor state of the express-roads. I need to point out at this point the devastating and deplorable state of Nigerian roads. The journey from Lagos to Benin should take a maximum of 3hours but our journey lasted 5hours. It was my first time on the Sagamu-Benin express-road and I was able to understand better the bizarre things that people say concerning that road. The portion of the road from Sagamu (in Ogun state) to Ore (in Ondo state) is bad, the portion from Ore to Benin is worse while the portion of the express-road from the boundary of Edo state to Benin is very vehicle-friendly.