The Fiji Labour Party has called on the interim government to take immediate action to reduce bus fares in light of a substantial decrease in the price of fuel.
“The explanation by Transport Minister, Mr Timoci Natuva, that fares would remain the same and that FIRCA may instead reduce the State subsidy paid to bus operators, is not acceptable because it provides no relief to the travelling public,” said FLP Leader Mahendra Chaudhry.
“It is appropriate to reduce the fares and let the subsidy remain at its present level, if justified. The first call must be on the fares paid by the travelling public and not the State subsidy.
“It is to be noted that taxi fares were reduced as a result of ministerial directive. The LTA should now be directed to invoke appropriate procedures to have bus fares reduced without delay.
“The authorities must stop trying to bamboozle the people. Its recent actions to defer wage increases awarded by the Wages Council and its reversal of bus fare reductions announced earlier are sad examples of an apparent lack of concern for the poor in our society,” said Mr Chaudhry.