New Bus System Stalls before Start-Up
BALI’S proposed busway linking Denpasar and urban centres in three neighbouring regencies has been delayed until the end of the year because of management and technical issues.
Bali transportation office head Made Santha said the government was reviewing management of the system and studying existing public transport routes and vehicles.
The new system, previously due to begin operating this year, is designed to help ease traffic congestion in Denpasar and the neighbouring urban areas of Badung, Gianyar and Tabanan through the coordinated operation of buses on 17 routes between the centres.
Up to now each regency has run its own public transport system, creating inefficiencies and worsening congestion, especially in tourist areas.
Under the integrated plan, the national government was to provide 25 air-conditioned buses.
Local authorities have been building bus terminals and bus stops to accommodate the fleet.
“When the projects are completed, we expect the national government to immediately send the promised buses to the province (Bali),” said Santha.
Officials hope introduction of the integrated system and new air-conditioned buses will provide an attractive alternative to travel by car and help ease congestion.
Don’t Wait Up – The Diary, Page 2
Vigilantes Kill 3
ANGRY villagers beat one robber to death when they caught him red-handed and then broke through police lines to break into the police station at Sekotong, West Lombok, killing two other thieves who were in police custody.
A fourth thief escaped while the villagers were beating the first man to death and hunting down the other two in bush land late last week
When the two were captured, they denied the robbery and were handed over to police. They then confessed to the theft after officers confronted them with some of the stolen goods.
Villagers then massed at the police office and demanded the two men be handed over to them. When the police refused, the crowd stoned and broke into the headquarters to find the robbers hiding in a toilet.
In the Suds
SOUTH Kuta Police detained the laundry manager for the Hotel Melia Benoa, Nusa Dua, who had been smuggling fabric softener out of the resort in 20-litre jerry cans and selling it.
Police on Sunday said the crime was uncovered by a resort security guard who noticed that a trolley used to transport the clean laundry of external clients to a van for delivery was carrying unlisted items including the softener.
South Kuta Police chief Nanang Prihasmoko said Wayan Mataram, 45, had admitted committing the theft more than once and had lost his job.
Banks Face Lawsuit
BALI’S consumer protection agency (LPK) says it is ready to prepare a class-action lawsuit on behalf of bank customers who have lost savings in the current spate of thefts of funds through ATM machines.
LPK chairman Putu Armaya said this week the affected banks had failed to provide optimal service to customers according to Law 8/1999 on consumer protection.
They had not put effective ATM security systems in place, he said.
Armaya also regretted the banks’ reluctance to help police to solve the crime by providing them with information on ATM security systems.
The banks whose customers have been robbed of savings – sometimes everything in their accounts – are BCA, BNI, BII, BRI, Mandiri and PermataBank.
Earlier this week only one bank – BCA – had provided police with footage from closed circuit television (CCTV) equipment installed at ATMs, according to police reports.
Pedal Power Pushed
BICYCLE lanes will be introduced on more Denpasar roads in a programme designed to support cyclists, reduce traffic congestion and improve environmental health.
The announcement was made last week by Community Bike Denpasar head Dewa Made Merthakota with the support of Denpasar Mayor IB Rai Dharmawijaya Mantra.
Merthakota said bicycle lanes were already popular in parts of Renon and Sanur and the new plan to introduce more lanes would be launched on February 21.
Bike lanes would be well marked and other road users, especially motorists, would be required to give priority to cyclists, he said.
The move follows the successful introduction last August of car-free days in designated streets of Denpasar which were popular with individual cyclists and cycling clubs, he said.
The mayor said encouraging people to ride bikes to the office, school and other destinations would reduce traffic congestion in Denpasar.
The Bali TimesFiled under: The Island