Some workers of the state-managed transport, Metro Mass Transit Limited (MMT) have not been paid for months, XYZ News has learned.
The workers most of whom are conductors and other staff working to ensure the smooth operations of the transport company confirmed that the state owes them although most of the vehicles are in good shape and working.
The issue of the unpaid salary arrears came to light Monday when some listeners of Power 97.9 FM called into Dwaboase, a programme hosted by Prince Minkah, to pour out their frustrations.
“I can’t mention my name but I work at Metro Mass. The truth is that since last year up to now our salaries have not been paid,” the male caller stated.
“The situation is terrible but when you say it, some people think you are exaggerating. I use my energy to load cars but when it gets to a time I need to be paid, the company does not honour its obligation.”
Another caller, a female from Accra, said “Metro Mass isn’t paying us. Please appeal on our behalf for the government to pay us,” she said in Akan but would not mention her name for fear of being victimised.
Checks indicate that some staff of the company had indeed not been paid for months others, especially officials had been receiving salaries although the company faces some challenges.
“The problem is that the company faces some financial challenges because some of the vehicles that should work have been grounded,” a staff told Myxyzonline.com on condition of anonymity.
He said the government had been called to intervene but they do not know when the aid will be sanctioned.
Management of the MMT has been silent on the matter.
Metro Mass Transit was established to provide intra-city, inter-urban and rural-urban bus services in the country under the tenure of John Agyekum Kufuor.
The policy framework for the financing and operations of the MMTL was that government will provide support for the acquisition of buses to enable MMT to provide relatively cheaper and affordable mass transportation services to the public as a necessary social service.
Meanwhile, the government is set to boost the operations of the Metro Mass Transit Limited fleet with some 600 new buses soon.
The Minister of Transport, Mr. Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, who disclosed this in Parliament indicated that the purchase of the new buses is part of the measures to revamp the company and offer decent buses to commuters.
“A total of 100 new intercity buses have so far been supplied to the MMTL at a total cost of $17.5 million. This was financed by the government. We have also signed a contract with VDL Bus Roeselare for the supply of 100 intercity buses, spare parts, and training services,” Asiamah disclosed.
He said a total of 50 broken-down VDL buses at MMTL would be repaired to augment the fleet, adding “This project is also being financed with a €25.49 million mixed credit facility from the government of Belgium and Belfius Bank SA/NV. under the same contract.”
He stated that the first batch of 45 buses is in production and expected to be delivered by the second quarter of 2022.
The Minister was responding to a question filed by the MP for Adaklu, Kwame Governs Agbodza about the current state of MMT and sought to know how many buses had been procured for the MMT since 2017 and at which cost.
Explaining further the Transport Minister noted that the government was “pursuing other avenues to bring in more buses to revamp the operations of the MMTL.”
“Currently, Value for Money Assessment is being undertaken for the supply of 300 Hyundai Buses from Korea and additional 200 buses from China. We expect to add a total of 600 new buses within the short-medium term period,” Asiamah stated.