Ahok launches BRT buses, issues ultimatum to APTB
The Jakarta Post
The Jakarta Post
As many as 300 bus rapid transit (BRT) vehicles will be provided by the Transportation Ministry for operation by the state-run city bus company (PPD).
The buses will operate mainly outside of Jakarta, only passing through the city using busway lanes. Passengers will pay a fare of Rp 9,000 (less than US$1) by tapping an electronic card on a machine inside the bus.
'This system [automatic payment inside buses] is what we are trying to apply on all Metro Mini and Kopaja buses which have been integrated with the Transjakarta system; they'll put the machines onboard. After paying Rp 9,000, passengers are not required to pay anything more should they wish to transfer to a Transjakarta bus,' said Jakarta Governor Basuki 'Ahok' Tjahaja Purnama when announcing the BRT buses, as quoted by Kompas.com.
Such convenience applies the other way around too; should a passenger want to go outside of Jakarta, they would not have to pay extra after their initial payment at a Transjakarta bus stop.
Ahok initially offered the concept to the integrated bus network (APTB), but it was turned down. The APTB offers bus routes connecting Jakarta with its neighboring cities and is operated separately by private transportation companies.
The rejection of Ahok's offer prompted disputes between the governor and APTB operators as he disagreed with the APTB's daily income target system.
The system, according to Ahok, forces APTB buses to linger along their routes waiting for full capacity ' causing traffic jams in doing so. He once threatened to stop the APTB from being allowed to use busway lanes.
His proposed solution at the time was for the APTB to use a pay-per-kilometer system, where drivers are paid according to the distance they have driven.
Now, with the arrival of the BRT, Ahok has predicted that the APTB will lose customers if its buses keep stalling on their routes.
'If they insist on rejecting our system, they will lose. I have said before, 'Don't go against the government'. If they keep refusing [to join the management system under Transjakarta] then I will take it to Mr. Jonan [Transportation Minister Ignasius Jonan],' said Ahok. (rad/kes)(++++)
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