Bua Briefs 136

17 April 2009

The Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) programme

The BRT Programme is the road-based component of the Public Transport Strategy [PDF] that is designed to move large numbers of people to all parts of a city quickly and safely.

South Africa’s Public Transport Strategy is being implemented to ensure that communities enjoy the ease of moving from one point to the other

Working with all stakeholders, government is committed to provide access to fast, regular, high-quality, safe and affordable public transport for all.

Commuters, industry stakeholders and the public should support our efforts to create a world-class public transport system for everyone.

By developing an all-inclusive, dignified and modern public transport system in South Africa, we will promote economic growth and development and increase trade and employment in our country and the Southern African Development Community region.

We are making good progress in ensuring our public transport system is world class and is ready to handle the upcoming Confederations Cup and the 2010 FIFA World CupTM.

The BRT Programme aims to provide better public transport and benefits for everyone

The BRT Programme is part of a public-private partnership in which cities build and maintain infrastructure, stations, depots, control centres and a fare collection system. Private operators own and manage the vehicle fleet, hire staff and provide services in a long-term contract.

The BRT Programme will introduce larger vehicles to transport people through dedicated lanes, as well as:

  • enclosed bus stations that will link with integrated feeder systems
  • vehicles and stations that will be fully accessible to people in wheelchairs and user-friendly for those with special needs, such as children, the elderly, the sight and hearing impaired, etc.

Existing bus and taxi operators will feed into the public transport system and contract with the relevant municipality on a long-term basis.

Fares will be administrated using a smartcard system to ensure they are affordable for commuters, and to the advantage of bus and taxi operators.

Government will continue to work with the taxi industry to find solutions to the legitimate concerns raised.

Our country deserves to have an integrated, safe, accessible and reliable public transport for all.

Freedom Day, 27 April 2009

Together celebrating our democracy and building a better life for all

On 27 April 2009, South Africans will commemorate Freedom Day, which celebrates the country’s first democratic election in 1994. Fifteen years later, and following our fourth general election, the country can celebrate the achievements that have been made in entrenching democracy and creating a better life for all, and call for strengthened partnerships to face the challenges ahead of us.

As we celebrate Freedom Day, we can be proud of the resilient and maturing democracy that we have built together as a nation

We have come a long way from our divided and bitter past to a society based on equality, dignity and respect for human rights. Our constitutional order has proved itself to be strong.

Four successful democratic elections have been held and we have created a government that represents the will of the people. On Freedom Day, government reaffirms its commitment to consolidate democracy and create a South Africa united in diversity.

WWe commemorate the heroism and sacrifice over years of struggle to win our freedom, with the solidarity of people from across the globe.

We celebrate the continuing hope and resilience of our people, working together to achieve the vision in our Constitution.

The 2009 Freedom Day celebrations express our pride in the achievements we have made as a nation in the past 15 years, and our commitment to overcoming the challenges we face

We take pride in the progress we have made since 1994 towards a better life for all and a more united society.

There is hope as we have made incredible progress in the past 15 years. We have broadened access to basic services previously denied to most and made sure that many more people can participate in the economy.

Millions of lives have been transformed since 1994, but we know that we need to continue the struggle against unemployment, poverty and crime. Our goal remains to half poverty and unemployment by 2014.

We can overcome our fractured past and its legacy if all sectors of society take responsibility to create a unified and caring society.

We all have a responsibility to ensure that our democracy and freedom is maintained and strengthened for future generations.

Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative for South Africa (AsgiSA)/Joint Initiative for Priority Skills Acquisition (Jipsa)

  • The launch of the AsgiSA/Jipsa Annual Report 2008 highlighted a number of positive outcomes of South Africa’s economic planning process. The report can be found on www.gov.za.
  • The R787-billion AsgiSA infrastructure development programme ensured that the country had a countercyclical government investment programme lined up before the world slowdown appeared on the horizon:
  • The Siyenza Manje Programme run by the Development Bank of Southern Africa has deployed 190 civil engineers to 154 municipalities to date to help build capacity at municipal level.
  • Business Process Outsourcing has attracted investments of over R900 million and created 9 000 jobs.
  • Investment in modern urban transport systems continues, highlighted by the R25,6-billion Gautrain link between Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport and Tshwane (completion end 2010); the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project; a number of major metropolitan bus rapid transit networks; and completion of the project to consolidate passenger rail service institutions into the South African Rail Commuter Corporation (completion 2008/09).
  • By March 2008, a total of 18 879 people were registered for artisan training through  education and training authorities.  12 000 of these artisan trainees will  undertake the trade test by 2010, with the remainder undertaking the trade test in 2011.
  • Engineers: In 2007, the Department of Education allocated R439 million over the period 2007 to 2009, largely for improved teaching and learning infrastructure for engineering. This is in addition to an amount of R48 million provided in 2006 to improve university engineering pass and graduation rates.
  • Artisans: The Joint Initiative for Priority Skills Acquisition will continue with its focus on developing scarce skills and has set itself a target of training 50 000 artisans by 2010 in 16 identified trades.


2010 World Cup

  • World Cup trophy to be taken on first-ever Africa tour The Coca-Cola Company and FIFA announced details of the route, which will span more than 50 countries during the course of a 70-day tour that will afford thousands of Africans the opportunity to enjoy a rare close-up view of the coveted World Cup trophy.

IPL extends the profile of South Africa

  • Moving the Indian Premier League (IPL) extravaganza to South Africa will help create a silver lining to the grey economic clouds hovering above the country. South African economists speculate that the IPL glitz-and-glamour show, British and Irish rugby tours and FIFA Confederations Cup tournament could provide a R1,8-billion revenue boost come early July. (The IPF Chief, Lalit Modi, has been quoted as saying that “the South African Government and Cricket South Africa have been incredible” and that he has “never been in a situation where solutions are found inside minutes, and that’s what we’ve found in South Africa”.