Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Darren O’Rourke TD, today called on Minister Eamon Ryan and the National Transport Authority to address the atrocious standards being delivered on bus routes served by Go-Ahead Ireland.
Deputy O’Rourke was speaking from outside the Department of Transport at a Sinn Féin demonstration to highlight Go-Ahead Ireland’s poor service across Dublin, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow.
The Meath East TD said:
“Commuters across the capital and in the Greater Dublin Area are fed up to the teeth of the poor service being delivered by Go-Ahead Ireland.
“Late buses, no shows, overcrowding and generally poor service standards has been raised constantly with us as public representatives on routes right across Dublin, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow.
“This is causing serious problems for people who rely on these buses and very little is being done by the Minister or the regulator to fix the ongoing issues.
“People are literally being left stranded on the side of the road. This type of service will drive people away from using public transport.
“Go-Ahead Ireland are a number of years into their contract, so we simply don’t accept this is still teething problems.
“Sinn Féin warned the privatisation of our bus services would drive down standards, as profits would be prioritised over punctuality, reliability and customer service.
“Go-Ahead’s Irish subsidiary made a €2.6m profit last year, which is hard for commuters to stomach given the poor service they are experiencing on the ground.
“The privatisation of public transport in Britain has been an unmitigated disaster and we must avoid that template at all costs.
“If Minister Ryan wants more people to use public transport, he needs to ensure buses are on-time and reliable. He needs to get on top of these problems.
“The National Transport Authority needs to stop treating Go-Ahead Ireland with kid gloves and use their regulatory powers to ensure the service on these routes is improved.”