The Democratic Alliance in Gauteng notes with appreciation two enquiries into public transport, which are currently taking place. The first being that of the Competition Commission, which will, over two years investigate the high price of transport, and the second investigation by the Gauteng Provincial Legislature Portfolio Committee on Roads and Transport, which will interrogate the Province’s bus services.
These two important investigations come after years of the DA highlighting the parlous position of public transport in Gauteng.
Successive public meetings and visits to bus depots and routes have confirmed the DA’s view that there are major deficiencies in this primary mode of public transport, used by millions of residents every day.
The Competition Commission’s enquiry into land transport will be at national level, but the terms of the enquiry specifically include a focus on transport elements in individual Provinces, such as the Gautrain bus and train system, which is unique to Gauteng.
The Portfolio Committee’s bus enquiry began with two full days of public participation last week and follow-up sessions are scheduled. Public participation and representations have been solicited via the media.
Stakeholders such as the operators themselves, the law enforcement agencies, Government Departments and, importantly, commuters have been requested to participate. For the DA in the Gauteng Legislature, this is a welcome reaffirmation of the watchdog role that legislative bodies should be playing to protect the public interest in South Africa.
The DA will work to ensure that these investigations are held in a transparent and democratic manner, with positive results for the commuters in Gauteng.