Monday, 2 June 2008 6:58 PM

Walking in Light of Bus Fare Increase

Walking is becoming the obvious choice for most as the increase in fare becomes effective today.

Solomon Times noted that with the increase now in place, a large number of people opt walking to their workplaces this morning.

In a random street interview, people complained that the increase is just too expensive even for one day's trip to and from work.

"I live at KGVI and to do things in town and back home, it will cost me $10 for just one trip alone and this is just too much," a high school teacher complained bitterly.

She added that it's surprising while prices continue to increase, the recent being bus fares, yet "our government is turning a blind eye to the problem".

The high school teacher who does not want to be named added that it is obvious the little salary young workers earn in a fortnight is just not enough to cater for such daily increases currently experienced in Honiara.

"It is not just the bus fare issue, there are the shops that continually increase the prices on goods almost every month and it is so frustrating for everyone," she said.

Most echoed similar frustrations over the recent boost in transportation rate, stating that the bus owners should just keep to $3.00 adults and $2.00 students.

"It is a headache for us parents who are constantly worrying about making sure there's food at the table for our children and with the recent increase, most people are questioning how to make ends meet," a mother of four said.

Another approached said that he will "walk on my two legs which God gave me" rather than wasting $10 every day for bus fare.

"It is true that price on fuel has gone up but these bus owners should consider that not all passengers are employed and there are families who actually find it really hard to earn money for survival," young students approached said.

"Like this morning, I was on my way to school and I gave the usual $2.00 bus fare but the conductor refused to take my money, instead demanded the remaining $3.00 to meet the new rate," an obviously upset student told Solomon Times.

Another made a vow never to set foot in a bus "unless the bus fare is lowered to a reasonable rate".

Solomon Times understands that while some buses are flexible on their passengers, others are already demanding $5.00 fare.

Responsible authorities are called on to take note of the ridiculous price rise on everything in the country and to do something about it.

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By STEVE BANI Vura Heights, East Honiara
By GEOFFREY MAURIASI USP, Lacuala Campus, Fiji
By CHARLES KOULI Gizo, Western Province