The Department of Transport in Gauteng has confirmed that the payment owed to the bus company, Putco will reflect in their account on Monday.
Putco put brakes on 1 400 buses across the country indefinitely due to diesel shortage as a result of unpaid March subsidy claims by the transport department.
Putco’s spokesperson Lindokuhle Xulu says underfunding of the bus public transport industry, as well as the excessive fuel increases in the past few months, have exacerbated the situation.
The transport Head Of Department, Thulani Mdadane, says they forewarned the bus company that such a delay would occur.
“The payment not made to Putco is a portion of March. We paid for 15 days in March, the remaining 15 days we indicated will be paid to them in April when the new financial year starts,” said Mdadane.
He reiterated the department’s commitment to ensuring that services are restored to avoid huge inconveniences to passengers.
“To this end, the department is working with the bus company to find a solution to ensure minimal, if any, service disruption and inconvenience,” he added.
Putco has apologised to the 230 000 commuters who have been left stranded by this stand-off.
“As a company, we are working ever so hard to try and find solutions with the government as soon as possible. For us the priority is to get that money and refill our tanks to get back on the road to service our commuters, ” said Xulu.
Written by: Lindiwe Mpanza