Note to Editors: The following statement was distributed during a visit to the Nelson Mandela Bay Integrated Public transport System (IPTS) today by the DA Shadow Minister of Transport, Ian Ollis MP, the DA’s Nelson Mandela Bay Caucus Spokesperson on the Integrated Public Transport System, Jonathan Lawack, and the DA Caucus Leader in Nelson Mandela Bay, Leon de Villiers, while presenting the DA’s solutions to improve the roll out of the Nelson Mandela Bay IPTS.
The “quick fix” approach to address the problems identified with the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality (NMBM) Integrated Public Transport System (IPTS), since the DA visited Port Elizabeth in April 2012, has been a disaster. The persistent problems observed today with the IPTS in Nelson Mandela Bay have reached the stage that the people of the city would be better served if the programme was halted, reassessed and the corrective action taken.
Problems with the Nelson Mandela IPTS include:
The impracticality of the designated bus lanes;
Zebra crossings that obstruct traffic flow; and
Design flaws – placement of bus stations and incorporated taxi stops creates structural and safety problems.
The IPTS is not operational currently because of disagreements between the municipality and the local minibus taxi industry.
The project manager has allegedly been fired on Friday, and
The City is set to lose R300 million because they have not followed treasury procedures.
During a visit in April 2012, DA representatives from both Parliament and the Local Nelson Mandela Bay Metro requested that the then Minister of Transport, S’bu Ndebele, intervene to end the chaos with the transport system. A year later, we asked the recently reshuffled Minister of Transport, Ben Martins to take action. A year and six months later, no action has been taken by the national Department of Transport.
The DA will write to the new Minister of Transport, Dipuo Peters, requesting that she ensure that the people of Nelson Mandela Bay receive a public transport system that is safe, efficient, affordable and reliable.
The DA will present Minister Peters with a five point plan that will ensure the success and longevity of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality transport system. If implemented, this plan will ensure that a transport system that works is delivered to the people of Nelson Mandela Bay.
Re-engineering the drop-off and pick-up points;
Increasing width of the dedicated bus lanes;
Re-launch and advertising campaign;
Allowing opposition parties onto the project steering committee; and
Greater transparency and public engagement.
The roll out of an effective public transport system requires it to be properly integrated with existing public transport systems and for efficiency, they require a similar payment method, frequent arrival and departure times on all subsidised public transport to ensure ease of travel.
Nelson Mandela Bay deserves a public transport system which caters for the needs of the people as well as the needs of the city.
Article source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201307311260.html