The temporary hike in bus and taxi fares by the Road Transportation Board (RTB) recently has not been well received by the Popular Democratic Movement (PDM), who want the hike to be reconsidered.
Earlier this month, the RTB, in a joint media statement with the ministry of transport, announced a temporary increase of 15% on all bus and taxi fares, citing substantial loss as a result of the social distancing measures implemented to combat the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. The increase means commuters will pay N$13.80 for a one-way taxi trip to work, while those commuting from informal settlements such as Okahandja Park to Grove Mall will be forking out double the amount. However, the PDM parliamentarian Johannes Martin has frowned upon the decision, saying it was not only the transport sector that was hard hit by the Covid-19 outbreak. “With the above stated, the community members are already enduring enough and, therefore, the decision to increase transport with 15% should be withdrawn. What is so special with the transport industry that consumers must compensate for their lost income?” he questioned. He suggested long-distance buses should be allowed to operate on full capacity but should ensure customers pay normal fare and wear masks throughout the journey. Martin said buses must be equipped with sanitisers and passenger contact logbook to trace them in case a traveller is infected with the virus.
“If Air Namibia is requesting every customer to only wear a mask and sanitise while boarding a plane, why not with buses?” He also said taxis should be allowed to operate with three passengers and still charge the usual rate of N$12 for a one-way trip.
2020-05-22 11:01:12 | 2 months ago