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Parties push for good bus infrastructure

Torika Chandra
Wednesday, August 13, 2014

MANY concerns have been continuously raised on bus services in Fiji, says aspiring independent candidate Roshika Deo.

Ms Deo said issues such as overcrowding of buses, bus drivers failing to wait for passengers to sit before moving, buses with loud music and buses that do not follow their schedules have been raised during her community outreach programs.

"A well-managed, resourced and safe public transport system is critical for mobility, accessibility and environmental sustainability," Ms Deo said.

She said while bus conditions had vastly improved from previous years, there were still some buses whose conditions raised serious safety issues.

"Our buses also need to become disability and elderly friendly, including having garbage disposals through upgrading of the buses and relevant infrastructure.

"Bus infrastructure in our country is lacking considerably. Having a quality and comprehensive bus infrastructure improves quality of services and safety of passengers. The safety of our people is paramount, and so is our accessibility and mobility."

Social Democratic and Liberal Party director of communications Jese Sikivou said governments had an obligation to invest in infrastructures such as roads and bridges.

"One does not have to spend a long time on Fiji roads to encounter a bus spewing smoke from its exhaust pipe and that is fair comment on the condition of buses in general and the industry as a whole," Mr Sikivou said.

"Based on a per capita basis comparison with other developing countries, SODELPA would have to conclude the general condition of buses and the bus infrastructure in this country is completely unacceptable and unsafe, given the very crucial role buses play in the economic life of our country."

Questions sent yesterday to FijiFirst, Fiji United Freedom Party, National Federation Party, Fiji Labour Party and the People's Democratic Party remained unanswered.

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