The introduction of external inspectors by Johannesburg Metrobus has helped the City of Johannesburg’s public passenger bus service to increase its revenue collection by R500 000 a month and boost driver behaviour.
Presenting its performance assessment report for the second quarter of the 2016-2017 financial year at a recent council meeting, the entity said it had also seen vast improvements in the safety of its service, with no insurance claims filed in the period under review – from the beginning of October to the end of December 2016. Innovation has also formed part of the company’s operations.
According to the report, the introduction of the “Vaya Moja” app in June last year has helped to improve the way the entity communicates its bus schedules and operation times to commuters.
Metrobus normally distributes more than 60 000 copies of its timetable every quarter.
The “Vaya Moja” app, which has seen a significant uptake since its launch, is expected to considerably improve and reduce the costs of printing timetables, according to the report.
Mavis Machaka, who catches her bus at Ghandi Square in the Johannesburg inner city to commute to her place of employment in Rosebank, says “slowly the bus entity is listening to our needs as commuters”.
“I love the new app because it talks to me as a user of public transport. We’re in Johannesburg and it should show. The City should introduce new tools that will make the service relevant even to young people like myself. Metrobus services are getting better and I hope they continue improving,” she said.
The report states that the bus utility continues to focus on delivering on its mandate of providing a safe, reliable, affordable and environmentally friendly bus service.
In her submission in the report, Joburg Metrobus Board Chairperson Yolisa Kani says the bus service continues providing “a vital link” for residents and visitors travelling to work, healthcare facilities, schools, shopping centres and other destinations. She says passengers continue to provide the entity with vital feedback, which is analysed and used to improve the system.
“These decisions include the migration of the Oracle payroll to SAP and reinforcement of on-route inspectorate, despite employee resistance,” she said.
Metrobus was incorporated in 2000 and is a wholly owned City entity.
Its fleet of 486 buses operates on 229 main routes across Johannesburg, covering about 10 million kilometres and transport about 14 million passengers a year.
In his maiden State of the City Address (SOCA) on Wednesday, 03 May 2017, Executive Mayor Herman Mashaba said in the adjustment budget announced in February, the City allocated Metrobus R51-million to purchase new buses and a further R5-million for the refurbishment of the existing fleet.