In a bid to increase internally generated revenue, the Edo State government, under the leadership of Governor Obaseki recently imposed stricter measures on tax levies. The transport sector was not left out in the Development and as such, the tax on Uniben Shuttle Bus was raised to N1, 200 a day.
The development was met with strong criticism and protests from the beneficiaries of the Shuttle Service as it critically affected its normal operation. In an effort to ensure that they make a profit from the operation of the service, majority of the drivers threatened an increase in the price of the bus fare from N50 to N70
On seeing the adverse effect such a raise in the price would cost on the welfare of the Students, the Students’ union Government under the leadership of Hon. Ogbidi Osemudiamen quickly stepped in to the situation in an attempt to keep the price at its normal value of N50.
Several meetings were held with the Shuttle Drivers’ Committee and the Edo state Government in order to revert the tax increment and also maintain the bus fare.
After many relentless efforts in the struggle, the Students’ Union Government and the Deputy Governor of the state, Hon. Phillip Shaibu entered into an agreement and the S.U.G with an assurance that the tax levy would be brought down to a daily payment of N200. With this, the price maintained at N50.
But this was short-lived as the tax was suddenly increased to N800 and as a result, the shuttle drivers increased the bus Fare from N50 to N70.
In response, the Students, Union Government and the general Student community strongly stood up to oppose the development. Many stood up stating that the Shuttle Service was not established for the purpose of profit-making, but was to serve as a means to helping students in transportation.
The social media was flooded with campaigns against the development with the Students’ Union government launching “Operation Aluta Dance” and the “Uniben Students vs Edo state government” campaign.
After much fight from the S.U.G, the Student Community and concerned individuals, the price was brought back to normal at N50.
Also, THE STUDENTS UNION GOVERNMENT have resolved that the shuttle fare on campus remain 100 naira(cab), 30 Naira(shuttle bus) and 50 naira( ringroad and new Benin).
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