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Sep 4, 2012

Bus Association will meet with Transport Ministry over route issues

The discontent between the Belize Bus Owners Cooperative (B.B.O.C.) and their rival Westline is rearing its head again.  Recently, the Transport Ministry approved permits to Westline for runs that were previously held by the B.B.O.C. Thomas Shaw, the president of the Belize Bus Association, says that they have been dialoging with Westline’s owner, Sergio Chuc to settle the dispute amicably. Shaw says that the dialogue will now include the Transport Ministry.

 

Thomas Shaw, President, Belizean Bus Association

“We have this Sergio Chuc, the Westline, three runs were actually awarded to him, which he said he paid for. And the runs he stated he paid for were the same runs that B.B.O.C. was presently doing. That is what is in question at the moment. What we did last week, we had a meeting in Belmopan at the Convention Center where I invited him and he was present. He said he had already paid for the runs so he was willing to do a swap—give B.B.O.C. the morning runs out of Belize City; the first five runs out of Belize City and the first five runs out of Benque. B.B.O.C. said they have to go back to the executive body to really give them an update. But after considering it, the runs on the return journey, it will only be one hour. B.B.O.C. will actually have to bring out five buses from 12:30 to 1:30 which will be one hour and he will actually leave with that from two o’clock all the way down to eight which would be unfair for B.B.O.C. So B.B.O.C. actually rejected that offer so we go back to the drawing board; to the transport board and see what willb e their next decision on that.”

 

Jose Sanchez

Thomas Shaw

“So you attempted to negotiate with the other bus company, but shouldn’t it be with the transport itself?”

 

Thomas Shaw

“Well what we were trying to do because we were trying to see if we could settle the matter because in reality if you collect money from an operator, even if you don’t issue them a permit, if you collect permit from them, automatically, legally he paid for it. so we were trying to see if we could work things out in an amicable way where it didn’t have to escalate or anything. But seeing that that didn’t work out, then we have to go to the department and see what’s next you know.”

 

Jose Sanchez

“With the new change that the department is requiring you to do, are you going to be compliant with that; do you foresee any of the situation escalating as it has unfortunately in the recent past?”

 

Thomas Shaw

“Well basically, it is something that I addressed to my members and they are not really against it—it is good for the industry, but what the operators are saying is that if they are supposed to meet all these requirements, basically what is taking place: the high rise in fuel, parts, etc, down the line; they are actually operating at a loss. And the operators are asking for some sort of incentive—either exemption in fuel, hike in bus fares. If we want to see this industry go forward, we need to address this because everybody is operating, newcomers are coming in; somewhere down the line they figure it is a feasible business and then it’s not a feasible business and they just abandon ship and this is what we are trying to avoid. To make sure that you give the right people the permits, they will be more transparency; if you are going to issue a permit, then you call all parties involved and that way, something like this doesn’t really occur.”

 

Shaw says the Bus Association and the BBOC intend to meet with the government officials very soon to iron out the issues.

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7 Responses for “Bus Association will meet with Transport Ministry over route issues”

  1. lime says:

    BBOC should just step out of the business and make way for a better company. We need bus companies not cooperatives because all they care is for the money and they don’s give a damn about the communter. A BBOC express takes 2:45minutes from Belize City to Benque whilst the other bus companies take 2:20 minutes. imagine the difference in an express bus that’s what they call it bus they still stop and pick up people all over the highway

  2. passenger says:

    I believe that each and every one should be treated equally but when it comes to bus runs, I think that the best bus owners should be given the right to run along the highways. I was a passenger once in Westline and I was so disappointed on how they charge their customers, the conductor charged my seven year old son more than half price from Belmopan to San Ignacio and I believe that it was unfair to charge a child at that price and I saw a note in their stating “shorts drops is $1.50, I mean come on, any other bus line really doesn’t charge a child at age. So transport department should make the public know if children should be charge or not and should give the runs to those who are reasonable.

  3. student says:

    Transport department should allow only one company to operate in one direction in the morning and vice versa in the afternoon. For example, let Westline do all the morning runs coming out of Belize City to Benque Viejo and then return all the rums from Benque Viejo to Belize city in the afternoon. This way there would be no racing or overcrowding as that one operation will be able to adjust the number of buses sent out according to the number of commuters. The Cooperative, BBOC could do the runs going north in the morning from Belize.

  4. benque says:

    Shaws bus is the worst service they provide. always broke on the highway and never replace with other bus. one night I was coming in that bus when reach san ignacio it broke, never fixed so we the passenger have wait for ride, imagine 10.30 in the night. the other problem of that bus service is that when they reach san ignacio and if they only have 5 passenger going to benque in the bus they left the people in san ignacio and they go back. we need to reach benque and they never mind. I think that they may be replace by another bus line much better.

  5. Josephino Estroberto Pesomedio says:

    Each bus company MUST build it`s bus terminal to let customers decide where they want to go get a bus.

  6. Sensible Commuter says:

    i believe that root to the problem is the fact that transport is not regulating properly, we always hear them saying they will be doing this and that but it never happens. the bus industry does not need a superficial fix just so that commuters will shut up for a while but a true fix that commuters and the bus companies can be satisfied. i believe that if government would stop playing politics with our industries we the residents of this country will be better serviced.

  7. pitbull says:

    the root of the problems comes all the way from the G.O.B, When they where campaning for power the started the sweet-up many so aspirants to have there on business by owning a bus, just like anyone having there own taxi. BOOOM!!!! UDP WON!!!!! the bus business was use a bait, now the had to many people to satisfy, that they had to get rid of the weakest link, both in the north side, and west side of the country who where involve in the industry. MY FELLOW BELIZEANS THIS CURRENT ADMINISTRATION DONT CARE ABOUT HOW U TRAVEL, ALL THEY WANTED WAS UR VOTE. THAT IS THE REALITY, U DONT HAVE TO GO THAT FAR TO ADMIT IT. TELL ME WHICH ONE OF THESES MINISTERS TRAVEL MITH ANY OF THE BUSES THAT HAVE A ROUTE WITHING THIS JEWEL OF OURS. LET ME KNOW AND I STOP WRITING. NOT ONE OF THEM, THEY ALL HAVE BLING, BLING RIDE WITH CHOFERS. AND THATS THE BOTTOM LINE..

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