The Opposition Jamaica Labour Party is describing the planned announcement tomorrow of an increase in bus fares by the Ministry of Transport as ‘wicked and callous’.
The JLP says it rejects this plan and is urging the government to rethink its decision.
In condemning the planned announcement, Opposition Spokesman on Transport, Dr, Horace Chang, says the Government is making the wrong decision.
Dr. Chang says the Opposition will not support any fare increases, describing it as ‘an attack on the working people of Jamaica’.
He says the situation is even more dire as school fees are increasing and the government is doing nothing to ensure growth that can provide quality jobs to allow people to look after their families.
He’s accusing the government of being unconscionable.
In a brief statement today, the Transport Ministry says it’s become necessary to re-visit the fares charged to commuters riding on JUTC buses.
The JUTC last received a fare increase in September, last year.
The Ministry says since then, its operational costs have continued to increase, with no corresponding increase in revenues.
It says the proposed fare increase is expected to result in a significant improvement in the JUTC’s operating revenue, and would ultimately have a positive effect on the company’s bottom line.
Meanwhile, Dr. Chang is reminding the government that when it announced the fare increase last year, the Opposition requested a full audit of the bus company.
However, he says this hasn’t been done.
He says there’s also not been any efficiency report on how the revenues from the last increase have been used.
Dr. Chang says the Opposition stands with the Jamaican people, in rejecting the increase.