Putco commuters frustrated over suspension of buses

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Disgruntled Putco bus commuters have expressed frustration over the suspension of buses. The bus company suspended operations on Thursday morning due to the Gauteng government’s failure to pay subsidies.

Putco says it doesn’t have diesel to run the buses.

At least 230 000 commuters in Soweto, Tshwane, Kwa-Ndebele, and parts of Limpopo have been left stranded as a result.

Passengers from KwaMhlanga in Mpumalanga shared their frustration.

One commuter says, “I am deeply hurt by the issue of Putco because it is deliberately ruining our jobs. As we speak I don’t even have money to go to work.”

Another says, “Only today we have spent R200 to go to work, other taxis do not go where we are going, they do not use the route that is used by Putco to take us to work.”

“I really struggled to get to work. I bought a ticket that costs R1500 and now I used R50 + R22 to get to work and I still need to use the same amount to go home after work,” one adds.

Alternative transport

The Gauteng Roads and Transport Department says it will only start paying its service providers on Monday next week.

Spokesperson for the Gauteng Department of Roads Lesiba Mpya says, “I confirm that payment from the national government from processed yesterday, and will only reflect in our books on Monday, so the money that is being owed to operators will be dispersed on Monday the 8th.”

Putco spokesperson Lindokuhle Xulu says they would have preferred the payment to have been made earlier to avoid inconveniencing commuters.

“Putco buses where we operate are not able to provide services. At the same time, we do have some of the companies that operate under us and some of them operate in the Vaal and other areas, are not able to operate as well. This is because we are using the same suppliers, so that is the kind of reality that many commuters will be facing. And I say the numbers are around 230 000 people that will be stranded.”

VIDEO: Putco suspends operations: