COMMUTERS are looking forward to better service once the takeover of the main transport company in Putrajaya is completed.
Over the past few months, residents have had to put up with a depot full of abandoned buses which has become an eyesore, coupled with poor service.
There is light at the end of the tunnel for the long-suffering passengers following the sale of Pengangkutan Awam Putrajaya Travel and Tours Sdn Bhd (PAPTT), better known by the moniker Nadi Putra, to GETS Global Bhd, formerly known as Konsortium Bas Ekspres Semenanjung Sdn Bhd PAPTT is a subsidiary of Putrajaya Corporation.
Residents had feared the Nadi Putra bus depot in Jalan P9 would become a permanent graveyard for buses if action was not taken.
A site visit confirmed their fears with some 50 to 60 buses parked in an outdoor parking lot.
Grass can be seen growing out of the wheel spokes; proof that they have been stationary for a long time.
Some of the bus doors, which were left ajar, revealed drivers’ dashboards ripped apart for their electronic components.
Parts of the wire fencing around the area have also collapsed.
Putrajaya Subzone D Federal Territories Resident Representative Council chairman Safian Md Salleh said whatever the problems, the area should have been maintained properly.
“They shouldn’t just wash their hands off the matter and ignore safety and security concerns,” said Safian.
After so many buses were put out of service due to engine and other problems, there have been fewer buses servicing Putrajaya routes, leading to long waiting times and in some cases, complete no-shows.
“There is no denying Nadi Putra buses are constantly late, especially during peak hours,” said Putrajaya Subzone B MPPWP chairman Roslan Abu Hanif.
One Precinct 14 resident who takes public transport daily said she has lost count of the number of times she has been late for work.
Nadi Putra has been facing problems since 2014, especially with regard to poor maintenance of buses.
Matters came to a head in November last year with many buses forced off the road due to lack of funds for spare parts and mandatory maintenance.
Poor cash flow has been cited as one of the reasons with a Nadi Putra spokesman pointing out that since operations began in 1998, the passenger fare of 50sen per trip for adults and 30sen for students has remained unchanged.
A spokesman said during the transition process, they have provided support services to passengers.
Two vans have been mobilised to service commuters in affected routes but this was not made public as commuters were beginning to take advantage by treating it like a cheap taxi service.
At the signing ceremony to transfer 79.99% of equity to GETS Global, its managing director Datuk Che Azizuddin Che Ismail pledged to ‘move fast’ to improve service in time for the new year when school reopens.
On making the abandoned buses roadworthy again, its chief operation officer Muhamad Aman said a maintenance crew will be deployed to the depot.
“As many as 20 buses should be able to return to the road within the first month of operation,” he said.
Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, who was present at the signing, said the public transport woes faced by the federal administrative capital’s residents stemmed from lack of foresight.
The spokesman for Nadi Putra said to prevent further theft, especially of spare parts, vehicle doors will be locked at the Jalan P9 bus depot.
To get the latest bus updates, call 03-8887 7787 or 019-282 2280.