Samuda demands JUTC audit
Opposition Spokesperson on Transport and Works Karl Samuda has called for a full audit of the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) to determine if the impending increase in bus fares is necessary.
In a release yesterday, Samuda argued that currently the bus company does not have enough buses on the road to be economically viable.
"Up to 60 per cent of the new buses are down, and up to 40 per cent of the old buses are down," he said. "Additionally there are serious challenges in the Maintenance Department and strong evidence that the JUTC is not fully utilising its drivers in an efficient and cost-effective way."
Samuda said the current leadership of the JUTC has not displayed the aptitude to instil confidence that they will be able to turn the bus company around.
Let OUR judge fare hikes, say route taxi operators
One group of public transportation providers has suggested that the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR), and not members of the political executive, should be charged with the responsibility of setting the fare structure for the sector.
The proposal was put forward by the Route Taxi Association of Jamaica (RTAJ) as it reacted with disappointment to the 25 per cent fare increase the Government announced yesterday for its members.
The association had requested a minimum increase of 30 per cent.
"The OUR will take an economic position (in deciding on a fare increase), while politicians take decisions based on their own wishes," RTAJ President Sophia Campbell told The Gleaner.
Campbell called the increase "woefully inadequate" given the escalation in gas prices and other costs to provide the service.
PM to meet with company reps in China
Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller is expected to sign a major agreement with China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) on Wednesday.
Simpson Miller, along with Cabinet ministers Robert Pickersgill and AJ Nicholson, arrived in China last night (Jamaica time) for the start of a five-day visit.
The prime minister is slated to have meetings with senior representatives of Complant, CHEC, China Gezhouba Grp. Co., and China Development Bank. She will also have meetings with China's president, Xi Jinping, before journeying on Saturday to visit the Huawei facilities in Shanghai.
The prime minister will also visit the Bird's Nest Stadium in Beijing, the site of Jamaica's 2012 Olympics triumph.
Cops ask person of interest to turn self in
Detectives from the Centre for the Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA) have named Kirk Absalam as a person of interest.
In a release yesterday, the Constabulary Communication Network said all attempts to contact Absalam, otherwise called 'Charlie', have proved futile.
Absalam, a fisherman whose last known address was Greenwich Town, Kingston 13, has been asked to report to CISOCA or the nearest police station by 6 p.m. tomorrow. Anyone knowing his whereabouts is being asked to contact CISOCA at 926-4079, police 119 emergency number or the nearest police station.