Passengers will be required to pay an additional $20 to minibus operators, who ply their trade in the various routes at the beginning of September.
This was announced on Monday by the Business Ministry, which noted that the decision stemmed from a recent meeting held with the Minibus Association.
According to the Business Ministry, a new fare structure will be made available to minibus drivers, who will then be responsible for displaying same in their buses.
In addition to this, the two parties have noted that plans are also ahead to establish a code of conduct for bus drivers in light of several reports.
The President of the United Minibus Union (UMU), Eon Andrews, said during an interview with this publication that he is satisfied with the Ministry’s decision to implement a $20 increase.
He said, “It might not be a lot, but we are satisfied.”
In relation to the code of conduct for bus drivers, Andrews informed that the Ministry is currently in talks with the Union to have the operators trained so as to be able to up their game in the area of hospitality.
Moreover, he said that uniformity is on the list of things to be addressed.
In June, the President of the Minibus Union submitted a proposal for not only a fare increase, but for several other requests to ease the pressure on minibus drivers.
Although the call for a fare increase came at a time where fuel prices were constantly escalating, Andrews had noted that the call for the additional money was not only due to the fuel prices, but several other issues. Because of this, the Union’s President said even if the fuel prices lower, he would not be willing to drop the transportation costs.
“We are saying that, Yes, there are increases in many other things. We are not basing our argument on fuel, because we don’t control that in this country,” he said.
“We did not really like the idea of the new tyres because they only lasting like six months, and they’re very expensive. We want to look at the tyres. There were a lot of 100 per cent increases in the last budget; you know, Interest Tax, licence, everything; (so we want to know) how they’re going to be able to help us. If they could reduce certain things, it would ease (the strain on persons), because we are more concerned that the consumer doesn’t have to carry this load,” the UMU head explained.