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Carrier operators in North press LTA with demand for licence

Carrier operators in North press LTA with demand for licence
Labasa and Savusavu Carrier Operators Association president Samuel Jeet (third from the left) with some operators during a meeting at Vunika in Labasa on February 15, 2018. Photo: Shratika Naidu
February 19
12:06 2018

Some carrier operators in Labasa and Savusavu have planned to stop providing transportation to members of the public if  the Land Transport Authority (LTA) fails to meet their demands.

The Labasa and Savusavu Carrier Operators Association executive members had a meeting at the Labasa LTA office last Wednesday afternoon with the acting regional manager.

Association president Samuel Jeet said he and his executives attended the meeting and it did not turn out well.

“We have been operating for more than 30 years, paying stand fees and business licence and, operating legally,” Mr Jeet said.

“As from last month our access has been stopped by LTA and we have been asked to apply for Licence Carrier (LC).

“We are willing to apply for the LC, but what guarantee is there that we will get the licence and even if we don’t get the licence then what guarantee is there that we will get our refund.

“In 2003 LTA told us to apply for a LC and we did,” Mr Jeet said.

“Unfortunately since then we didn’t get our licence and neither our refund.

“This is why we questioned the acting RM what assurance is there whether we will get our license or refund if rejected.

“He told us just apply and gave no explanation.

“What kind of system is this?

“We are requesting LTA to give us LC and the approval to operate from the carrier stand to any destination on a need basis..

“Not from point A to Point B.”

Mr Jeet said they made these requests because there were many illegal operations carried out by private vehicles and the association members’ bread and butter is stolen.

“If LTA fails to help us make a decent living then we will cease our operation.

“All carrier operators will not operate if LTA doesn’t provide clear information on LC.”

LTA Response

When the Fiji Sun contacted LTA chairman Vijay Maharaj via email he replied that the application and issuance of a PSV permit follows a due process and has requirements that need to be met.

“Issuance of licence is dependent on the applicants meeting the requirements for the particular permit,” Mr Maharaj said.

“The LTA urges the public to apply with all due process followed and necessary requirements met as all mode of permits freeze is uplifted. Upon the uplifting of the freeze applicants are required to re-apply as a new application.

“Applicants also need to be mindful that the application needs to be furnished with all fresh requirements such as Police clearance and medical reports which have a specific validity period before becoming obsolete.

“Therefore, to ensure compliance to requirements and following of due process it is important that applicants re-apply after the freeze has been uplifted.

“The authority cannot give assurance that the applicant will ‘definitely’ get a licence/permit prior to application.

“Because as highlighted, the approval of the application is dependent on the set requirements, follow the due process and decisions on application based on Regulation Five of the Land Transport (PSV) Regulations 2000 which highlight areas such as public needs, effect on other PSV operators, suitability of routes, fitness of applicant, and many more.”

“If unopposed the application will be dealt with by chief executive officer’s office, however if refused applicant have the avenue to appeal to board and even to the Tribunal.

“The authority would like to urge the public to ensure compliance to the laws and regulations.”

Edited by Percy Kean


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