It is not yet known when the private scheduled buses will be allowed to run again, but at least bus holders have options in mind for the restart. The buses have been in garages for three months. The Department of Public Works, Transportation and Communications (OWT & C) had banned them from driving due to the risk of contamination after the first Covid-19 infections were registered in March.
Bushmember Edmund Dundas suggests that the folding seats be temporarily removed. “Leaving one person on each seat – both double and single – and temporarily raising the rate to SRD 4,” he summarizes. Dundas believes that driver cards of those who do not adhere to the above points should be withdrawn. In case of persistent behavior, the bus holder may even have to withdraw the bus license.
In addition, the use of the mouth and nose cap should be made mandatory for the driver and passengers. “The driver must be wearing gloves and they should be replaced every time they are driven and the bus disinfected.” He suggests making a one-off payment to the bus holders before they start driving again. “Many will not be able to start, because investments such as batteries and service are expensive.”
John Mahadewsingh of the Private Scheduled Bus Holders Organization (PLO) is talking to the ministry about the restart of the buses. According to him, there is a plan, but he does not want to say what it means. Suraj Sahadew-lal, president of the Association for the Development of Surinam Public Transport (Vosov), was not prepared to speak to the True Time .