24 Feb 2014 18:50pm
OSHAKATI, 24 FEB (NAMPA) - The Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association says it has been left disillusioned by the Works and Transport Ministers decision to recognise the Namibia Bus and Taxi Association (Nabta) as the only association to operate in the public transport sector.
Erkki Nghimtina made this announcement in a statement in October last year, informing village councils, town councils, city councils, municipalities and all relevant authorities to make land available to Nabta for use as loading terminals.
The Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association (NPPTA) expressed its displeasure at a meeting held between the NPPTA and Oshakati Town Council officials at Oshakati on Thursday.
The meeting was supposed to involve the NPPTA and Nabta, and was to be mediated by regional and local authority representatives.
It was aimed at ironing out the problems of continuing disorder at loading and offloading terminals at Oshakati and Ondangwa.
However, only the Oshakati Town Council and NPPTA were represented. Jackson Muma of the Oshakati Town Councils corporate communication division stood in for his council, while the NPPTA was represented by Paulus Ndimunhu (vice-president), Nathan Africa (secretary-general) and Edward Kalembe (spokesperson).
Contacted for comment, Pendapala Nakathingo of Nabta told Nampa on Monday Nabta could not be represented at the meeting because the NPPTA apparently initiated it without communicating the agenda of the meeting to the leadership of his association.
Nakathingo charged that NABTA, as a government-recognised transportation association, will not allow itself to be ambushed by NPPTA with a sinister meeting.
We know all their tricks. They (NPPTA) are busy dividing people in the transport industry and disrespect the Works and Transport Ministers decision to recognise Nabta as the sole association entrusted with all public transport facilities by Government, he said.
He described NPPTA as an infant public transport association which is duplicating activities which are already being carried out by Nabta.
Nakathingo was quick to point out that the Works and Transport Ministers decision to recognise only Nabta was done within the ministers mandate and aimed at imposing order in the countrys transport industry.
Africa said last Thursdays meeting was aimed at bringing NPPTA, NABTA, Oshakati and Ondangwa town councils and the local law enforcement agencies together so that the current public transport situation at Oshakati and Ondangwa could be reviewed.
It was also hoped that an amicable solution would be found to ensure smooth operations at bus terminals at the two northern towns.
The NPPTA believes it is only at the Oshakati and Ondangwa terminals where disorder is encountered, including public transport operators grabbing the bags of commuters.
Africa said NPPTA are taking the Works and Transport Minister to court on Friday in order to have him retract his announcement recognising NABTA.
Nowhere in the Public Transport Act is the minister empowered to give recognition to a one association above others, Africa told last Thursdays meeting.
NPPTA will approach Oshana Regional Governor Clemens Kashuupulwa and Oshakati Mayor Onesmus Shilunga to request that a consultative meeting between the NPPTA and NABTA leaderships be held at Oshakati so that the two associations can iron out their differences.