I was amazed by one item in today's Fijivillage that students will be able to travel free on buses. ECREA have been pushing for the Fiji leaders to consider the high cost of travelling to school. Thank you ECREA. How to win friends and influence people I am wondering. This is a worthy concept because the cost of travelling to school is a real burden on most parents in Fiji. But... who is going to pay for it all? I thought money was tight in the government coffers. The bus companies will have to be compensated fully. Will the children have cards? Only Monday to Friday and in school uniform I expect?
Students to travel for free in school buses
Publish date/time: 16/10/2009 [07:44]
Good news for parents and students as the government made a historic decision late yesterday which is expected to see all the students travelling free in school buses from next Wednesday.
In an exclusive interview with Fijivillage, Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama had confirmed that the decision has already been made and government officials are now working on the finer details to ensure that the new program is implemented next week.
As Bainimarama has revealed they are targeting to get the free bus fare programme running for school students from next Wednesday. He had also revealed to Fijivillage that they will also be looking at the option on whether the program can roll over for next year. Bainimarama said they will also look at the subsidies to be given to the bus operators.
So it is good news for parents and students as the government made a historic decision late yesterday which is expected to see all the students travelling free in school buses from next Wednesday.
The government made the decision based on the government fiscal surplus of $30 million and Bainimarama has decided the money should be utilized to assist the parents and students until the end of the school year.
The decision follows submissions to the PM's office on the difficulties that many parents are facing to send their children to school every day due to the increase in bus fare. This was resulting in a high rate of absenteeism in a number of schools as reported in the survey recently conducted by ECREA.
(later) the finer details though:
The decision made means that any student travelling in the school buses from next Wednesday will not pay bus fares while students travelling in normal buses in uniform other than the school buses will pay half of the normal fare.
The half fare will only apply in the areas where no school buses are running.