Exclusive: How ticket Racketeering ruins Nigeria Railway Operation

Workers at the Nigerian Railway Corporation are making huge money from ticket racketeering, WEST AFRICA REPORTERS (WAR) can authoritatively report.

WAR visited Idu, Kubwa and Rigasa stations respectively and spoke with both staff and passengers.

A security man at the Kaduna Rigasa railway station narrated to our reporter how staff at the station conspire to racket tickets and share monies made at the end of the day when they close from work.

Another security man who did not want his name mentioned, told our reporter he is given two tickets every day to sell and make his own money.

He said that the tickets are given to him as part of his share from the racket. He disclosed that staff share between N20k to N30k depending on how the business moves in a day.

Mrs. Roseline who prefers only her first name mentioned narrated how her friend resigned from one of the new generation banks to take Railway job.

She narrated how her friend comes home with at least N15k every day as the money she made from the train station.

She is regretting not following her friend to work at the railway station, she told our reporter.

A staff of the railway station told this newspaper that at times they keep 10 to 15 tickets to highly influential persons who collect them on arrival and give them money in return in appreciation.

He said some of their customers are big men who are in the class of Senators and Ministers.  

He told our reporter some of their customers who are in the class of the rich give them N150k to N200k in appreciation.

A staff who barely pronounces any English word because he did not go to school, told our reporter that the best thing that has happened to him is working in the railway station.

Mr. Lukeman who say he is not a staff of the Railway Corporation but has a strong link connection with the staff told our reporter at the Rigasa station that he has built three houses and owns two commercial vehicles as a result of the money he makes from ticket racketeering.

“You do not need to queue for a ticket if you are on my customer list, just call me on my telephone, I will get your ticket and you pick it and board the train,” he told our reporter.

Another staff of the corporation told our reporter that they do not wait until a closing hour before the money made for the day is shared. She said they share the money per trip inside the manager’s office.

Explaining how the deal is been done, Shaibu, who claims to be one of the Racketeers, said they create ticket scarcity and force many passengers to join the train using standing space.

He said most of the money made in standing ticket belongs to the boys.

He disclosed that when there are no tickets, desperate passengers can pay as much as N4k for a ticket. In that way you make good money, he told this newspaper.

WAR could not get the response of the Railway officials, calls made to the Operations and Commercial department did not go through.

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