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The Addis Ababa City Administration Transport Bureau is to introduce electronic ticketing (e-ticketing) for the Anbessa City Buses. This new system is expected to solve persistent problems related to ticket issuance.
The new ticketing will allow passengers to use one pass for a day traveling or more instead of the existing model of paper tickets that need to be purchased for each travel from each different bus you may take in the day across town.
The City government has recently increased the number of its Anbessa City Buses. The enterprise has purchased about 500 Bishoftu Buses from Metal and Engineering Corporation in 2011.
The government has also introduced midi-buses, commonly known as Higer Buses, with individuals interested investing in public transportation on the basis of credit. It consistently announced that it would extend support for private companies and individuals that are interested in the venture, but still transportation remains a nuisance for residents of city especially during rush hour. The City’s Transport Bureau claims that it has taken various measures to resolve the problem and ease the transportation challenges. “Besides the different long-term solutions we have planed, we are using different techniques to lessen the problems. We are aggressively working on excelling the efficiency of Anbessa City Bus Enterprise,” said Feleke Haile, Head of the Addis Ababa Transport Bureau.
The number of buses is insufficient, according to the head, but there are also other factors that are affecting the enterprise from giving the best service it could. According to the head, traffic congestion due to several construction projects being undertaken in the city and the arbitrary parking on streets, wrong attitude among public transport drivers, and ticketing are some of the main factors that hinder the enterprise from serving the society at its best.
Feleke further said that there’s in fact attitudinal problem among the enterprise’s drivers and ticket attendants. “They want to go home early; they have attitudinal problems in understanding that they have to serve the society at their best,” he said at a press conference the Bureau held on March 14. Hence, in order to solve these and other problems, the bureau has undertaken various measures, he said. “We have implemented a reinforcement scheme for drivers and ticket attendants so that they would work at their best.”
Many passengers complain that ticketing of the Anbessa buses is backward and uncomfortable as people are required to queue in a long line whether on a hot sunny or rainy day along the bus to buy the trip’s ticket through a window. Feleke agreeing with the problem adds that the ticketing has hindered the enterprise from serving best its customers. “We [at the bureau] have decided to implement e-ticketing very soon,” said the head.
The bureau is also now strictly prohibiting parking on streets especially where congestions are severe. Another issue the transport bureau head raised is the attitudinal problem that exists among the society. “They don’t abide by traffic rules; They are always afraid of traffic polices and not the rules that govern transportation. They therefore violate the rules,” he added.
According to many citizens Capital talked to, regulations are misperceived because the executers [traffic polices] are misusing it for their own benefits. They claim that many of the traffic polices are rather corrupt [with the exception of few who work with ethics]. “Some of them are daylight robbers on the streets,” said one taxi driver who asked for anonymity. “We therefore run away from them, not the rules.”
The head also promised that Alliance City Bus will start operation very soon as it is finalizing preparation, and hoped that it will contribute to the efforts of resolving the transportation problems. “The reason why it didn’t start so far is because it only brought 27 buses while in its proposal it planned to bring 200,” he said. “It will however start operation soon”.
Feleke defended that the taxi zoning introduced by his bureau about two years ago has brought vivid changes. Nevertheless it still is misperceived by drivers, assistants and even the society. Passengers on their part insist that the zoning brought up only long queues.