By Tracey Khan-Drakes
[www.inewsguyana] – The Government, this morning, took a decision to discontinue the recently introduced big buse service.
The buses were intended to provide commuters along the East Coast, West Coast, East Bank and West Bank of Demerara with free transportation as a means of easing the transportation woes facing them after some minibus operators took strike action; demanding a 100 percent increase.
Minister of Tourism Irfaan Ali today met with the United Minibus Union and their affiliate member, Zone 32 Motor Bus Association (Georgetown to Parika) where a number of decisions were taken by the two sides that will take effect soon.
Minister Ali, said the engagement was a good one. “We need to find viable solutions, sustainable solutions that will be in the interest if the commuters but at the same time not dreading the position of the operators.”
The representatives and Minister Ali agreed to have the situation returned to normalcy, while negotiations with all zones will continue, starting with zones 31 and 44 on Tuesday September 23, at 3 pm.
According to the Ministry, “Both parties agreed that the situation must return to normalcy throughout the period of negotiations and discussion; that is, the government withdraws its action in relation to big buses plying certain routes, and the buses in the different zones reverting to the established structure until official agreement is reached and published in relation to the fares.”
The structure is as follows:
|Area||Vreed-en-hoop||Georgetown||From Parika To|
|New Road Crane (Junction)||$80||$160||$300|
|Harlem, Winsdor Forest,Den Amstel||$100||$200||$200|
|Hague, CI, Anna Catherina||$120||$200||$140|
|Philadelphia, Barnwell, Ruby||$200||$260||$100|
|Farm, Orangestein, Parika||$300||$400||$80|
|Short Drop (Adults)||$80||$80||$80|
Further, the Ministry added that, “we are pleased to advise commuters and operators of zone 32 that an agreement has been reached regarding the 32 zone’s fare structure. This structure comes into effect immediately, upon its publication (19th September, 2014.) The new structure does not impose any new or additional hardship on the travelling population, while at the same time; it safeguards the interest of the operators.”