Gauteng Roads and Transport MEC Ismail Vadi. File photo: Independent Media

PRETORIA - The Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport and the City of Tshwane have concluded an “inter-governmental authorisation agreement” to process subsidised bus contracts in the city as from the 1 April 2018. 

Gauteng MEC for Roads and Transport Ismail Vadi on Thursday said the agreement opens the way for the City to "take over fully" public transport responsibilities. “Ideally, public transport services should be managed at a local level and the agreement paves the way for Tshwane to progressively take over the function,” said Vadi.

Tshwane MMC for Transport Sheila Lynn Senkubuge, welcomed the move saying that the city will develop over time, its capacity to take on this important public transport function. In terms of the agreement, the department and the City have agreed to provide efficient and continuous public transport services, particularly in Mamelodi, where subsidised bus services were being rendered for the past two years by Autopax.

Autopax, as a state-owned transport entity, had stepped in to assist the department with bus services when Putco in 2015 voluntarily surrendered its contract to the Department due to company losses on the Mamelodi routes. Presently the department oversees subsidised bus services to townships in Tshwane such as Atteridgeville, Hammanskraal and along the Moloto corridor.  

Vadi said the agreement authorises the provincial roads and transport department to continue to contract subsidised bus services in terms of the National Land Transport Act until such time as the city is ready to take over the function. At the same time the department will help to strengthen the technical capacity of the city to manage the contracts over time.

He said both parties will review existing subsidised bus contracts in the Tshwane. Vadi also indicated that the open tender for the Mamelodi bus services will be published later this month.  

- Africa News Agency (ANA)