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Published:Sunday | November 23, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Jamaica Labour Party supporters at the party's 71st annual conference, held at the National Arena last Sunday.-Norman Grindley/Chief Photographer
Clinton Clarke
This picture shows that the problem of party faithful protruding from JUTC buses is not new.-File
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JUTC bills party $59,000 for bus damage

Chad Bryan, Staff Reporter

The Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) says the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) will be billed for the cost to repair buses allegedly damaged by their supporters on journeys to the party's 71st annual conference, held last weekend at the National Arena, Arthur Wint Drive, St Andrew.

Last Sunday, motorists and other individuals reported that persons were protruding from the windows, doors and emergency exits on top the JUTC buses. Damage done mostly to vents on 12 of the 30 buses hired by the JLP cost the state-run bus company $59,000 to repair.

"The vents were removed. If you do not know how to remove them you will end up damaging them. We did repairs between Sunday night and Monday morning. We couldn't run the risk of having the 12 units damaged out of use. This would have meant inconvenience to the commuters," said Clarke.

He also said that some JUTC drivers were intimated by supporters who wanted them to run traffic lights.

When asked whether the JUTC has refused to do business with persons who might have damaged its buses before, Clarke said that he is not aware of this being done during his tenure.

Clarke has also acknowledged that going forward certain measures need to be looked at when renting buses to persons. It is the JUTC's policy to provide charter services as the demand arises.

"As long as they make the request, pay their money and sign our contract then we have no difficulty doing business with them," said marketing and communications manager of the state-run bus company, Clinton Clarke.

The buses are normally rented for a day or few hours. The cost of the rental will then depend on the circumstances for which the buses are needed.

"For example, the JLP wanted us to transport supporters to the National Arena, we charge them a rate. If they wanted us to go anywhere else we would charge them a rate," Clarke said.

File

Clinton Clarke, marketing and communications manager of the Jamaica Urban Transit Company.