8 February 2013

Sierra Leone: Citizens Cry Over Transportation Difficulties

Freetown — Many citizens in the Freetown municipality have raised concerns over the hard struggle they engage in almost every morning as they seek transportation from one point of Freetown to the other.

Speaking to Concord Times, a student at the Institute of Public Administration and Management (IPAM), Abdul Turay, said he stays at Calaba Town in the east of the city and is usually faced with constraints to board a commercial vehicle to the central part.

"I spend more than Le6, 000 every day to transport myself to the campus for lectures. It is hard to get a commercial vehicle that can take you to where you are going unless you pay in halves," he said.

Salmata Bah, a pupil of the Annie Walsh Memorial School, also told this medium that the difficulties involved in getting a commercial vehicle these days have now forced her to make it a point of duty to always wake up by 4am to prepare for school which tells on the time available for her to study at night.

"I am pleading with the government of Sierra Leone to at least provide enough public buses for people especially we the student. We cannot afford to pay more than Le2, 000 just to take us to Eastern Police when we only receive Le5, 000 from our parents as lunch," she said.

A business woman, Hajaratu Sesay, who also spoke to Concord Times, said the issue of transportation has caused serious problems between drivers and passengers in the city. She added that a taxi driver can ask a passenger to pay double fare from Up-Gun to Rokupa when it ought not to be.

She also noted that traffic wardens should be held responsible for the negligence of these commercial drivers as they collect money from drivers who turn half way at the detriment of commuters.

Meanwhile, many people have used phone-in radio programmes to express their grievances on the topic.

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