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Metro Mass Transport offers more employment
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Business News of Sunday, 15 October 2006

Source: GNA

Metro Mass Transport offers more employment

Sunyani (B/A) Oct. 15 GNA - The introduction of the public Metro Mass Transit Limited (MMT) has offered employment to 2,500 persons throughout the country and the current staff strength is expected to exceed 3,000 by the end of the year with the arrival of about 300 buses.

Mr. Cas Van Eerden, Managing Director of the company who disclosed this at a press briefing in Sunyani on Friday said janitorial services, bus washing and cleaning were outsourced to third parties providing employment for additional 500 persons.

The construction of the buses in Kumasi too has offered several indirect jobs in the manufacturing sector, he added.

Mr. Eerden said the general productivity of the workforce would increase since the company offered fast and reliable transportation from home to the workplace, adding, the operations of the company would empower Ghanaians to better access jobs, shops, schools and healthcare.

He explained that moving the nation forward was a shared responsibility of the company and the people to keep the buses in good condition at all times.

The managing director appealed to passengers not to litter in the buses and always to insist on their tickets to ensure transparency and accountability.

Mr. Eerden disclosed that the company at the moment had a fleet of 846 Yaxing, DAF and Iveco buses and that it was expected that the fleet would reach more than 1000 by the end of the year.

He explained that the Fiat-Iveco buses were donated by the Italian government while the Yaxing buses were manufactured in China in support of the Ghanaian government, adding, the company in April this year received 150 of such buses from the Ministry of Roads and Transport to augment its fleet.

Mr. Eerden said all the DAF and VDL buses were financed through an ORET grant agreement between the Dutch and the Ghanaian government of which 35 percent of the value was a gift of the Dutch whilst 65 percent was provided as a loan, the managing director added.

He disclosed that the company carried more than 40 million passengers nationwide in 2005, more than 12 million kilometres and by June this year the buses had carried more than 28 million passengers and had given more than three million school children free rides.

The managing director announced that the company would create a rural-urban service division with the arrival of 100 TATA and 150 DAF commuter buses and several rural communities, especially in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions would be served.

Mr Eerden said plans were underway for MMT to set a public transport system, an integrated network of scheduled buses inter-linking residential areas, business districts, central bus terminals, suburbs and villages in a reliable, efficient, safe and affordable manner.

"Ghana can be the forerunner in Africa that combines bus infrastructure with frequent bus services effectively", he noted, adding, "Free bus lanes are a dream for every commuter but as well for the various police, ambulance and fire services".

Givig an overview of MMT, Mr. Eerden said the company was officially incorporated in 2003 with shareholders including State Insurance Company, National Investment Bank, Ghana Oil Company Limited, Agricultural Development Bank and Social Security and National Insurance Trust.

He said these shareholders had 55 percent whilst the government held the remaining 45 percent, adding all the regions had been covered by the MMT.

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