What you should know about the new Lagos ride-hailing taxi scheme and how it operates

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Wednesday, launched the long-awaited ride-hailing taxi initiative, codenamed, Lag Ride, with the rollout of the first batch of 1,000 brand new GAC-branded vehicles.

The Lagos Ride scheme is expected to compete with other well-known e-hailing services like Uber and Bolt, as well as provide employment for thousands of drivers.

The conception of the scheme

The idea of the Lagos State Taxi Scheme was first made public in March 2021, when the state government signed an agreement with a Chinese firm, Choice International Group (CIG) Motors Co. Limited for the assembling and roll-out of 1,000 Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) as taxis for Lagos residents.

The agreement with the automobile firm also included the establishment of a Motor Assembly Plant in Lagos State.

It is a partnership between Lagos State-owned IBILE Holding Limited and CIG Motors Company Limited, with the objective to provide clean and reliable means of taxis movement across the metropolis at affordable cost, using brand-new vehicles.

Governor Sanwo-Olu said that the Lagos State Taxi Scheme was another innovative policy of his administration targeted at making life easier for Lagosians, improving mobility and creating a seamless multi-modal transport system as well as accelerating socio-economic growth.

What you should know about the scheme and how it operates

The ride-hailing initiative which is a safe, comfortable and modernized taxi scheme is being operated on a lease-to-own basis and is a component of the State Government’s multimodal transportation blueprint being executed under the Traffic Management and Transportation pillar of the THEMES agenda of the Sanwo-Olu administration.
Lagos Ride would provide the driver/operator with the right to own the vehicle after payment is fully made within 3-4 years.
Drivers who intend to be part of the scheme are required to pay about N1.9 million down payment, which covers the 20% equity of cost of vehicle, registration and insurance, advance rent payment on Dashcam for a month, first aid kit, LASG E-Taxi license and soft skill training.
Each car being used in the scheme comes with technology-enabled security features that monitor every journey undertaken.
To improve riders’ and passengers’ security, a full security gadget, including a 360 dashboard camera that will give 24-hour audio-visual feeds to the control centre, had been pre-installed on each car deployed for the scheme.
Each car came with a physical panic button that could be used by anyone on board in case of assault or emergency. The panic button, the Governor said, is also on the mobile application and is connected to the Control and Command Centre.
All trip fares are expected to be remitted electronically via the Lagos Ride platform. Where a rider is carrying physical cash, you will be required to credit the equivalent sum in value to the wallet of the driver.

Vehicle ownership and repayment plan

The vehicles assigned to drivers will remain the property of Ibile Holdings until the full payment is made after which the title and ownership will then be completely transferred to the driver.
The drivers are required to service debt using daily fares for the first two years. After this, they can pay down the debt and get out of the obligation. No outright payment shall be honoured in the first two years.
Maintenance and all insurance considerations shall be executed on behalf of the drivers, however, the driver shall be responsible for fuelling the vehicle.
Drivers will be required to comply with all maintenance service schedules or calls for maintenance as non-compliance will attract a penalty.
All maintenance requests or complaints about the vehicle are expected to be lodged in the maintenance module in the driver’s mobile app.
Any cost or damage incurred from taking the vehicle to an unauthorised service centre, or without prior notice, shall be borne by the drivers.
A mandatory fee of N8,709 shall be deducted from the driver’s wallet daily to service the debt obligation and 25% for service fee. Drivers can fund their wallets from other sources, aside from fares, to service the daily debt obligation.
In the case of insufficient funds, the driver’s account will be debited and the value deducted once it is sufficiently funded.

Cost-sharing for passengers with Lagos Ride

The Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladehinde, during the launching of the scheme said that to make the rides affordable, the technology on which the scheme is operated had made ride-sharing possible for passengers, who would agree to share ride and share transit costs.

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