Busmen take on Provincial Minister
October 24, 2010 05:05 pm
The Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) head Gemunu Wijeratne has said that they do not have confidence on the Western Province Transport Minister as he has not done anything tangible to improve the private passenger transport services.
Mr. Wijeratne said that the free travel passes introduced by the Provincial Council (PC) for certain categories of persons has been proved a failure and that many abuse such facilities. He added that the LPBOA would suspend the facility until such time that a token system is introduced for the reimbursement of such travel facilities from the PC.
The busmen’s association chairman added that recently Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake had instructed them not to hire out buses to university students to engage in protests.
Mr. Wijeratne said that if the Minister wanted to stop the hiring of buses to university students, the bus owners will also desist from hiring out their vehicles to political parties as well, unless a written request is submitted.
Responding to the LPBOA accusations, Western Province Transport Minister Upali Kodikara said that Gemunu Wijeratne was smarting as he cannot engage in corrupt activities due to several measures introduced by the PC.
“It is wrong to accuse me of having not done anything for the private passenger transport services. I was instrumental in introducing a uniform for the bus crew. Also a time table for night services was drawn up by me. These are a few and there are numerous other matters that I have done,” Councillor Kodikara told Adaderana.