Bus fare talks crash
by Janitha Seneviratne

Friday’s talks between President Mahinda Rajapakse and the Private Bus Owners’ Association was a failure and a section of the bus owners decided to launch a strike commencing Monday, while another section was opposed to trade union action

The discussions were consequent to demands by bus owners that the fares should be hiked since fuel prices had been increased twice since the last price hike on bus fares.

President Rajapakse told the bus owners that this was not the appropriate time for fare hikes. After the talks with the President, the bus owners had a discussion with Transport Minister A. H. M. Fowzie. The Minister had said that bus fare hikes could not be permitted. This had prompted a section of owners to walk out of the meeting

Minister Fowzie told the owners that in the event of a strike, the SLCTB would be deployed in full force and he reminded them that a majority of bus owners had told him that they were opposed to any strike action.


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