Possibility of train strike still looms
There will be a countrywide bus strike on Thursday. Golden Arrow Bus Services stated: "It is with sincere regret that Golden Arrow must alert our passengers to nationwide strike action which will affect the entire South African bus industry. Unfortunately, as a result of dead-locked wage negotiations, the unions' party to the South African Road Passengers Bargaining Council (SARPBAC) have given notice of their intention to embark upon strike action on 18 April 2018. Negotiations are still taking place and Golden Arrow remains hopeful that an agreement can still be reached."
Cape Town's MyCiTi bus service will also be affected. "The strike will have a serious knock-on effect on all public transport and road-based traffic as more than 72,000 commuters make use of the MyCiTi service on any given weekday," said Mayoral Committee Member for Transport Councillor Brett Herron.
"Furthermore, we anticipate that the strike action will have a severe impact on Cape Town's commuters who are already taking strain due to the challenges that Metrorail is experiencing with the Central line," said Herron in the media release.
The Vehicle Operating Companies (VOCs), which operates MyCiTi busses, will shut down its services for "safety of commuters and personnel for the duration of the strike".
The City expects an increase in commuter traffic and is urging people to carpool.
Meanwhile the United National Transport Union (UNTU) and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) are in a wage dispute that is currently being negotiated at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA). Prasa is responsible for Metrorail and if a settlement cannot be reached, commuters in major cities may find themselves without buses or trains. GroundUp has been informed that the CCMA has proposed an 8% increase for Prasa employees.