Metro Mass Acquires 100 BusesBy Daily Guide
5/21/2012 4:34:15 PM -
The Metro Mass Transit Limited has taken delivery of 100 new buses to augment its fleet and boost operations in the country.
The buses, which form part of the second consignment of total 150 buses, were secured through the Metro Mass Transit Limited's internally generated funds. The first 50 buses were delivered earlier this year.
Vice President John Mahama, before commissioning the buses, commended the management of Metro Mass Transport (MMT) for revamping the finances of the company, which saddled with debt incurred from the purchase of fuel and other supplies.
'You have proved that state-owned companies are capable of competing with private sector,' said Mr Mahama.
The government owns 40 percent of the company's shares while the rest are owned by other stated-owned institutions such as the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) and the State Insurance Company (SIC), among others.
'Many are quick to conclude that state owned enterprises should be privatized. This is a shining example of how state owned company can be managed successful. This proves that such companies can grow and have a very bright future.'
Mr. Mahama however challenged the management of the MMT to ensure that the next buses they acquire are disabled-friendly.
'We need to consider people living with disability. MMT must consider buses that have facilities such as low floor buses that can enable persons living with disability to board easily,' said the vice president.
He urged the company to extend its services to people living with disability and advised the private sector to consider mass transport service as a viable business to invest in.
'The private sector can also own mass transit enterprises to complement what government is providing that would provide services in the urban areas. Private operators must get in here and challenge the Metro Mass Transit Company.
'Female drivers are more sensitive and they record fewer accidents,' he said, but the male drivers at the function did not agree with him as they murmured.
The Vice president, who expressed hope that the plan to recruit more female drivers would contribute the reduction in road accidents, urged all the drivers of the company to handle the buses with care by making safety a priority.
'When we handle the vehicles with safety, the buses can reach their life span and by that time the company would have been able to generate enough money and the full benefit of buying these new buses would be achieved.'
Managing Director of MMT, Maxwell Awuku said the company now has over 1000 buses operating through out the country, stressing that the aim of the company is to secure new ones to enhance public transportation and help commuters.
MMT, he said, in 2011 transported 36 million passengers and has since its inception lifted 259 million passengers while over 1.3 school children in uniform have enjoyed free transportation.
Deputy Minister of Transport, Dzifa Attivor said 'we are watching the operations of Metro mass transport with keen interest.'
She advised the MMT to extend its services to commuters in the hinter lands, noting, 'We hope that many more districts will benefit from your services.'
By Emelia Ennin Abbey