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Tuesday, 20 November 2012 23:44(JollofNews) – Members of the Gambian National Assembly Monday unanimously agreed to disband the country’s public transport corporation.
The Gambia Public Transport Corporation (GPTC) was set up in 1976 by an act of parliament to operate and maintain the public transport services of the country for the conveyance of passengers and goods.
In its heydays, the corporation employed thousands of Gambians with its MAN buses providing easy movement within the country for students and members of the public, at suitable times and a reasonable cost.
However, the wheels fell off in the 1990s due to official corruption and negligence by the authorities. It never recovered from the financial and operational difficulties prompting the government to seek the blessings of deputies to disband it.
Francis Liti Mboge, Minister of Works, Construction and Infrastructure, said the corporation is now in a poor state that it is better to pull the plug on it and cut the losses that have been accruing to the public purse.
“A business entity must either maximise revenue or cut costs to remain solvent. With GPTC, neither option was possible,” he said.
He added: “The decision was therefore made to disband the corporation. Having closed an old chapter, it is only prudent that we must look to the not distant future for realising our dreams with regard to public transport. It is important to note in this regard that government is ever conscious of its commitment to provide public transport for the socio-economic development of this country.”
Minister Mboge said due consideration has been given to the interests of the employees.
“Although the corporation has been dysfunctional for a considerable period, salaries and wages to employees have been paid consistently. It is envisaged that through a collective bargaining mechanism, the employees would be given a reasonable severance package,” he added.
Written by PK Jarju
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