Temas Especiales

23 de Jan de 2021

Nacional

Threats of strike just a political strategy

PANAMA. The threats of going on strike by public transport drivers and bus owners were qualified by the government as "extreme" and “a ...

PANAMA. The threats of going on strike by public transport drivers and bus owners were qualified by the government as "extreme" and “a political action”.

The Presidency spokeswoman, Judy Meana, said that the only reason that the public transport leaders are threatening to strike is to get attention.

She said that the transport leaders are angry because the Terrestrial Transport Authority (ATTT) announced that no more compensation would be paid to bus owners and drivers in the near future, but that they were welcome to participate in the modernization of the public transport sector.

“We never said that we are going to kill them or take away their livelihood, like some of them had said to the media,” said Meana.

Before the threats and demands of the bus drivers and owners, the government designated the Presidency Minister, Jimmy Papadimitriu, the Minister of Government and Justice, José Raúl Mulino and the ATTT director, Sandra Escorcia, to meet with them.

Since the Transmovil project was scrapped after a lawsuit was put before the Supreme Court requesting that it be declared unconstitutional, the bus drivers and owners face an uncertain future. They want an answer as soon as possible.

Under Transmovil, each of them was going to receive $25,000 for every “diablo rojo” they scrapped, but only a few received payment before the whole project was cancelled.

Many critics to the scheme felt that the amount was excessive, especially when the majority of scrapped buses were not road worthy.

President Ricardo Martinelli wants to create a Metro system for the capital city that will link Tocumén and Arraiján with the capital.