Durban Transport bus operator Tansnat fires bus drivers over misconduct says it was no secret drivers were stealing from the company
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DURBAN - A SHORTAGE of Durban Transport and Mynah bus drivers has left commuters scrambling for transport when they go to work in the mornings and home in the afternoons because bus operator Tansnat has fired a number of drivers for misconduct.
In recent months commuters have been seeing different drivers behind the wheel only to find that there is a shortage of drivers after struggling to get a steady transport service for months.
Affected commuters include those who use the muvo card system, who are then forced to use alternative transportation which costs them more.
A source who travelled on the Aqualine bus to work and back said ever since they received a number to call the bus service, they call every morning to find out whether a bus was going to be available to transport them or not. If not, they have had to take multiple minibus taxis in order to get to work.
The source said one day when the bus was early and available, she asked the driver why the bus was late or unavailable on some days.
“The driver said there was a shortage of drivers. He said he was asked to fill in before going to his normal bus route because there were no drivers to transport us,” she said.
She said after speaking to the driver, it dawned on her that perhaps their usual drivers were fired for misconduct.
Tansnat’s chief operations officer Vickesh Maharaj said driver recruitment was an ongoing process and driver shortages were not the cause of non-operation or buses operating late.
“The problem of non-operations and delays is due to the city not supplying Tansnat with the full complement of buses. We are not sure as to when the city will supply the full complement. We have taken the city to court and have obtained a judgment against them in June this year ordering them to supply the full complement of buses and yet they still have not complied as they have appealed the court ruling,” Maharaj said.
“The short supply of buses to Tansnat for its operations has been ongoing since 2016 and the situation has worsened from December 2019.”
The eThekwini Municipality said the matter was still before the court and therefore could not comment.
Although Tansnat did not disclose how many bus drivers had been fired from each service, Maharaj said it was a normal course of business that staff are dismissed due to misconduct.
Maharaj said the drivers were fired for various misconducts in terms of the disciplinary code and it was mostly the traffic department that was affected by discipline.
“It is no secret that bus drivers have been and are still stealing from the bus company, Aqualine and Mynah bus services. Discipline is in the normal course of business,” Maharaj said.