On Special Assignment
this week:Episode Title:
Ha Ri Vayi (We Are Not Going)Date:
Tuesday, 10 March 2009Time:
Tonight Special Assignment looks at the controversial bus rapid transit (BRT) system the government plans to roll-out across Gauteng by June this year.
Intended as a major upgrade to our ailing public transport system - the BRT concept has been surrounded by controversy from its inception. Amidst allegations of financial kickbacks, lack of proper consultation and improper planning - the greatest opposition to the system is coming from the multi-million rand taxi industry. The introduction of brt presents a very real threat to the livelihoods of taxi drivers and their bosses.
Protests against the rapid bus transit system - christened the 'reya vaya' (we are going) movement by government - have already taken place across the country, from Port Elizabeth, to Cape Town, to Soweto.
Despite government spending millions on an advertising campaign for the project, it appears there hasn't been buy-in from many of those most affected. Commuters, however, welcome the new system, saying it will change their lives.
Opponents alledge the government did not consult them properly, and that there have been 'buy-outs' of opposing voices in a bid to silence dissent to the idea.
As the final implementation date looms, Special Assignment speaks with those most intimately affected by the BRT, from taxi drivers, to entrepreneurs who make a living hawking at taxi ranks, to those in favour - commuters for whom a daily task like going to work or school, is beset by a myriad of transport-related problems.
Special Assignment is on SABC3 on Tuesdays at 21h30.