- Ride-hailing drivers demand a 200% increase in fares, which Bolt believes will negatively impact their earnings.
- Ride-hailing drivers embarked on a nationwide strike on June 7, 2023, to get employers to heed their demands.
- Although active drivers claim to be unaware of the strike, they indicated support, saying the increase in fuel prices has made things difficult for them.
Bolt's Nigeria Country Manager, Yahaya Mohammed said the company considered supply and demand before adjusting prices.
"Excessively high prices will discourage passengers from ordering rides, thus negatively impacting drivers’ earnings. Therefore, our revised fares aim to strike a balance between better compensation for drivers and manageable prices for passengers," Mohammed told Techpoint Africa.
The Amalgamated Union of App-based Transport Workers of Nigeria (AUATWON) directed ride-hailing drivers to embark on a nationwide strike yesterday, June 7, 2023, until their demands were met.
Interestingly, some Bolt drivers saw bonuses of up to ₦6,000 ($12) on their driver app yesterday, June 7, 2023. This looks like a union-busting tactic Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee if the US describes as temporary bribery.
If you've not been in the loop of what Bolt, Uber, Indriver, and other ride-haling drivers have been up to, here are four questions about them answered.
Why are ride-hailing drivers on strike?
Drivers of ride-hailing companies including Bolt, Uber, and Indriver have embarked on a nationwide strike until the platforms they work for increase their base fare by 200%.
AUATWON made this demand following the increase in the price of petrol (almost 200%) after President Bola Tinubu announced the removal of petrol subsidy.
Essentially, the group wants the base fare on ride-hailing apps to be ₦2,000.
Interestingly, some drivers in Lagos and Port Harcourt told Techpoint Africa that they had not been aware of the strike action and had gone about their business as usual. They, however, acknowledged that if they had been aware, they would adhere to AUATWON's sit-at-home order as the increase in petrol price has made their work difficult.
How have ride-hailing platforms responded?
Besides Bolt, no ride-hailing platform has made a statement concerning the drivers' demands. In addition to its statement, Bolt announced a price increase on Friday, June 2, 2023.
Bolt is giving a ₦6,000 bonus to drivers?
Yes, drivers that have decided to work during the strike have been awarded bonuses of up to ₦6,000. One driver told Techpoint Africa that he received a ₦3,000 bonus.
Drivers can also stand a chance of earning more when there's a shortage of drivers on the road as Bolt increases price surge to encourage more drivers to become active.
What are the conditions for getting Bolt's ₦6,000 bonus?
To be eligible for Bolt's bonus, drivers need to complete nine consecutive trips on either cash or card payment, and not cancel any trip.
While ride-hailing drivers need a price increase to make up for a spike in fuel prices, an increase in price could also be detrimental to them as riders will seek cheaper alternatives.