' We want Satellite bus rank opened'
MATSAPHA –The Prime Minister Sibusiso Barnabas Dlamini’s decision to return buses and kombis to the nain bus rank has been harshly criticised by the Manzini Market vendors.
Over 200 vendors boarded buses to the Municipal Council of Matsapha offices where they intended to appear to plead their case before the committee appointed by the Prime Minister to look into the Satellite Bus Rank impasse.
The vendors’ main concern was that if buses and kombis serving the eastern part of the city were eventually permanently returned to the main rank, their businesses would be adversely affected at the market.
The resolution to seek audience with the Chairman of the committee Bishop Stephen Masilela was conceived in a meeting held by all the vendors at the Manzini Market on Monday.
From as early as 7am, the vendors locked the gates yesterday and boarded buses which they had organised the previous day.
When they arrived at the Municipal Council of Matsapha offices they could not get in as they were informed by a police officer that only two representatives should be selected among them.
They selected Petros Madzinane and Nompumelelo Cala-ne to represent them.
Later Madzinane said the vendors considered their journey to the municipal as a success because they were able to achieve something. "Our main concern was to be allowed to make submissions to the committee and we are happy that we were allowed to.
"It should be noted that anything that has to do with the Satellite Bus Rank also concerns us because there can be no effective market without a bus rank. Currently, we, who sell at the market cannot survive as there are no customers," he said in an interview.
Meanwhile, Calane also said operationalising the Satellite rank is important in that it makes the whole city functional.
"If only one bus rank operates, then business is concentrated in one area. But if the Satellite Bus Rank is also operating, businesses will also open in the southern part of the city," Calane said.
She said the Manzini Market was established with the trust that the Satellite Bus Rank would operate alongside it.
"We have waited for years to have this promise fulfilled, while we live from hand to mouth," she said.
Government Spokesperson Percy Simelane said: "The matter has been handed over to a committee chaired by Bishop Steven Masilela. The committee comprises a host of stakeholders including marketers. They can raise the issue there."
... accuse operators of lying
MATSAPHA – Man-zini market vendors have accused the Satellite Bus Rank public transport operators of lying when they say they are not making money at the rank.
The vendors, in interviews at the Matsapha Town Board said in the few days that buses and kombis were at the Satellite rank, their vehicles always left full.
"If someone has to go to Siteki, she will go there no matter what. Commuters cannot abort their journeys just because they are avoiding the Satellite rank.
"If these conductors say there are no commuters going to the east, the question is where have they all gone?
"It is for this reason that we say they are not telling the truth that there is no business at the Satellite rank," said a vendor who wanted to be referred to as LaDlamini.
She was echoed by her colleagues who said the Satellite Bus Rank would have had even more customers than the main rank because it is closer to the market.
The vendors said their target were customers who board buses and not kombis.
"Kombis do not generate money for us because they do not carry luggage. We want to submit to the committee that it has to recommend buses for the Satellite rank and not kombis," said one.
Yini lelukhuni kantsi lolowakha that rank bekete inhloso yini. Litawushona nehla nenyukiswa yintfo lengavakali. Asekucace emaswatini kutsi tinyenti tintfo lekumele tentiwe letiyintfutfuko. Kuphindze kusuke wona lamaswati aye eGeneva ayokhuluma lutfuli kepha nyalo abhizi abambelela kutfutfuka kwelive.
Jun 6, 2012, 7:45 AM, TY (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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