• RTSA fixed fare reduction is excessive and beyond the July adjustment.
• New fares were not discussed during the consultative meeting held with stakeholders on 2nd August, 2022.
• The approach taken by RTSA to fix bus fares are contrary to the principles of a liberalized economy.
Bus and Taxi Owners Association of Zambia (BTOAZ) has rejected the new bus fares announced yesterday by Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA).
Association National Chairman Sydney Chewe told Money FM News in a statement, that the new fares were not discussed or agreed upon during the consultative meeting held with various stakeholders on 2nd August, 2022.
Mr. Chewe stated that the approach taken by RTSA to fix bus fares are contrary to the principles of a liberalized economy and tantamount to the reintroduction of price fixation and controls, as well as the provisions of the Road Traffic Act no. 11 of 2002.
He added that the new bus fares are far in excess of the K3 reduction in fuel prices by Energy Regulation Board (ERB) calculated by every trip made by the bus or taxi.
“The RTSA fixed fare reduction is excessive and beyond the July adjustment which was instigated by a 6.81 percent increase in the price of diesel as compared to a price reduction of 3.4 percent,” Mr. Chewe said.
Mr. Chewe proposed that the new bus fares should not be effected pending the resolution of the dispute over the reduction rate.
“We have also sadly noticed that you have put this matter and correspondence in the public media before settlement with the (BTOAZ) who were prime movers of the motion to adjust fares. This does not sit well with our agreed position to deal with each other in confidence,” he stated.
He also requested RTSA to call for an urgent meeting to be attended by the Association, Public Private Transport Operators, and Ministry of Transport to review the matter, resolve the dispute and agree on future fare adjustment process.
Following the drop in fuel pump price by Energy Regulation Board (ERB), the approved bus fare reduction average percentage for Intercity long distance is 14 percent, while Copperbelt and Lusaka local and other towns is K5, Inter-Mine/Peri-Urban Copperbelt K7, Lusaka Peri-Urban K7.