English firm to operate 24 bus routes; NTA dismiss privatisation suggestions

There’s been a mixed response to the announcement that an English transport firm is to operate 24 Dublin Bus routes.

Go-Ahead emerged as the preferred bidder after a competitive tendering process and will begin to operate from November 2018.

Critics of the decision say it amounts to privatisation.

The National Transport Authority denies this is the case, and says no Dublin Bus drivers will have to transfer to Go-Ahead.

Chief Executive of the NTA Anne Graham expects a lot of new drivers will be hired.

"we expect most drives will stay with Dublin Bus and yes the new operator will have to provide a number of new drivers and their will be positions they will have to fill.

Reacting to the new earlier today the General Secretary of the National Bus and Railway Union warned that any further privatisation would inevitably result in industrial flashpoints across the bus and rail network.

He said: "The NBRU will focus our attention on ensuring that our affected members on the privatised routes will not be forced to move from their current workplace, we will also move to recruit those new entrants that will work for the private operator to ensure that they will be properly represented and work with them towards achieving similar terms and conditions as those workers we represent in the state-owned companies.

"This Tory-lite Government, disgracefully supported by the rag bag Independent Alliance, would be wise to restrict this foray into the privatisation of publicly-owned transport services to the routes identified, moving beyond will not only be vehemently opposed by the NBRU, but will inevitably lead to major industrial unrest across the public transport system."

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