North West Star, the state-owned bus company that serves Hammanskraal, Moretele area, Mabopane has resumed operations. Bus services were suspended due to financial and internal matters, leaving commuters stranded.
The bus drivers and some workers went on strike several times. In the past, the company failed to pay them their outstanding provident fund and failed to meet their expectations. They also seek to backdate a 4% salary increase.
In January, it was alleged that a service provider was owed almost R16 million by North West Star. The company seized the keys to the buses to protest against the provider.
During the March protests employees of the bus service, a subsidiary of North West Transport Investment (NTI), accused Thomas Samson of milking the company for his personal gain, resulting in the entity’s inability to pay salaries for two months.
Although it has encountered many challenges, the bus company is expected to resume serving its commuters in Tshwane .
In a communication by Acting Group Chief Executive Officer, Presley Maleka and Thomas Samons, Senior Business Rescue Practitioner, they expressed gratitude to commuters with discounts.
”This notice informs all North West Star passengers and employees about the discounts the company is offering as a token of appreciation”
”Passengers who purchased and loaded weekly smart cards and did not utilise the trips during the non-operation of the buses on 28 April 2023 to April 30th, 2023 will receive rewards as follows.
” Tickets that expired on the 28th of April will be awarded two trips at a discount, Tickets that lapsed on the 29th of April will be awarded four trips on a discount and tickets that expired on the 30th f April will be rewarded with a trip discount by the bus company,” said Maleka.
”Passengers who purchased trips and loaded monthly smart cards for April 2023 and did not utilise trips during the non-operation of the buses will be awarded discounts to travel for free from the 24th of July 2023 to the end of 31st July 2023″
“The same monthly passengers will be discounted for the remaining twenty-two days and twenty-four days in August 2023,” added Maleka.
The bus company emphasises that passengers who did not buy or reload their trips for April 28th, 2023 and May to June 2023 will pay full price when the operation resumes and that any depleted trips must be taken to respective depts. For investigation and resolution.
Hammanskraal Commuters said the problem of poor and unreliable buses at North West Transport Investments dates back to 2014.
In 2019, the Transport minister said that there would be 200 extra buses to service Hammanskraal, Mabopane and Atteridgeville.
Maleka further said that NWS, BRP team, NWPG, GOORT and NTI Management appreciate the patience and understanding experienced during the difficult period of the bus shutdown.
“A joint briefing and meeting will be held by stakeholders to address employees about the new development within NTI,” added Maleka.