North bus woes raised with Prime Min­is­ter

Fiji Sun - - Fiji Today - Edited by Ru­si­ate Mataika JOSAIA RALAGO Feed­back: josaia.ralago@fi­

Peo­ple liv­ing in the ru­ral ar­eas in the North have ex­pressed their con­cerns about the lack of qual­ity bus ser­vices. These con­cerns were raised dur­ing a re­cent ta­lanoa ses­sion hosted by Prime Min­is­ter Voreqe Bain­i­marama at the Ratu Ilisanita Malo­dali Tech­ni­cal Col­lege in Nadogo, Macu­ata. One res­i­dent, Ranadi Matak­ibau, said mem­bers of her com­mu­nity were ap­palled at the poor bus con­di­tions that ser­viced their area. Ms Matak­ibau said the buses had to be changed con­stantly be­cause they were old. “We need bet­ter bus ser­vices here be­cause we can­not con­tinue to suf­fer with these old buses that cre­ate a lot of dis­com­fort when we are trav­el­ling on them,” she said. An­other con­cerned cit­i­zen, Sushila Wati, of Naike­likoso, Nadogo, com­plained that the buses in her area run only twice a day. The first one at 7:30am and the other at 4pm. “Some­times when we travel to the Wainikoro Health Cen­tre in the morn­ing, get checked by 10am, we will have to wait till 4pm for the bus to take us home,” Ms Wati said. “This is not good and we need the bus to at least run more than once dur­ing the day.” Mr Bain­i­marama ad­vised com­mu­nity mem­bers to al­ways voice these kinds of con­cerns with rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties so they could be aware of it. Mr Bain­i­marama told the Land Trans­port Author­ity of Fiji staff mem­ber present, Se­vu­loni Wat­i­tu­ru­turu, that they should look into is­sues and if nec­es­sary, award the con­tract to an­other ser­vice provider if the cur­rent ones fail to per­form con­tin­u­ously. Fiji Bus Op­er­a­tors As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Par­mod Chand said the bus com­pa­nies as pub­lic trans­port ser­vice providers were open to sug­ges­tions from mem­bers of the pub­lic as long as they make them aware of their is­sues.

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