Transport operators avoid paying debts to the State – news

Seventeen of the 18 public transport operators who purchased buses and mini-buses on credit, within the framework of the Urban Mobility Strengthening Program, in the province of Cunene, have avoided paying the debt contracted, since 2017 to the present date

The director of the Cunene Transport, Traffic and Urban Mobility Office, Geraldina Paredes, revealed that only one operator has regularly reimbursed the amount, while 17 other beneficiaries made only 10 percent of the payment.

Speaking to Angop, he clarified that each beneficiary of the buses paid the State an initial amount of two million, 917 thousand and 746 kwanzas and, monthly, they would pay 461 thousand and 976 kwanzas and 55 cents, over a period of 10 years, corresponding to 120 installments. For minibuses, operators have a period of 60 installments, corresponding to five years, worth 124 thousand and 390 kwanzas and 91 cents, for operators that operate the urban route, while for the intercity route the fixed value is 119 thousand and 699 kwanzas and 14 cents.

The official made it known that, during this process, the province benefited from 50 buses and mini-buses, delivered in phases in 2017, 2019 and 2020, worth 58 million, 354 thousand and 933 kwanzas, each. According to the source, most operators do not fulfill their obligations, citing the inoperability of some means, the poor condition of access roads and the low billing process.

Geraldina Paredes recalled that, for the delivery of the resources, some conditions were dictated which showed that companies should have the financial capacity so that, with their own resources, they could pay off debts, instead of depending on revenue from passengers. In view of the situation, she said that the Cabinet, through the Ministry of Transport, is studying the measures to be applied to defaulters, highlighting that several meetings were held with the beneficiaries to make the charges, but that they remain reluctant.

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For his part, the owner of the operator Muhavet Lda., Joaquim Muala, beneficiary of five buses, claims low billing, aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic situation, as a condition for non-compliance with regular obligations. Operator Francisco Buleth requested greater understanding from the Ministry of Transport, highlighting that the delivery of the means came at a time when passenger mobility was interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic at the time.

He also pointed out the economic and financial problems that many companies are facing and the reduced tariffs, as aspects that conditioned the regular fulfillment of obligations. Simão Pedro, from the operator SP Hilifavali, said that the three allocated buses have been inoperable for four years due to engine failure problems. He said that, after handing over the resources, he managed to work for only a year and a few months, but, due to lack of spare parts, he stopped his activity, without obtaining income, and is currently unable to pay the debt he incurred.

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