BY SAMIE WAIKORI
PASSENGER fare for East Malaita has doubled due to poor road conditions.
A man from East Malaita, Mr Jerry Simigi said on Tuesday that this new fare-rate just came about couple of weeks ago.
Simigi said before this new fare was introduced, the normal fares were $50 from Auki to areas of Fousasa and Kwai’aba and $100 from Auki to Atori where the East Malaita road ends.
He said that for now fare from Auki to Fousasa and Kwai’aba areas is $150 and $200 for Auki to Atori.
Adding that for truck hiring, previously it was $2,000 from Auki to Atori; now it increased to $4,000 for the same distance.
Simigi said transport owners have defended the fare-hike by blaming the poor road conditions.
Simigi also stresses that the ones who bear the brunt of this are the passengers and travelling public.
“Because most passengers from East Malaita were farmers and they generated very little money upon their markets in Auki.
“So introducing the new fare rate was indeed brought inconvenience to them and on the other hand it also affected the regular passenger route to East Malaita,” Simigi said.
Simigi adds his voice to the growing calls by public in Auki and surrounding communities for the national ministry of infrastructure development to step in and address the poor road conditions.
Meanwhile, Simigi adds that their member of parliament has already sent 10 drums of fuel as a response to the problem, for constituency machines to begin work.