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Bus driver contracts were unfair, ministry says

According to the Ministry of Education, the decision to terminate the contracts of school bus operators on three Family Islands did not inconvenience students.

The Ministry of Education said yesterday that it terminated contracts for school bus operators on three Family Islands because the contracts were “unfair and unsustainable”.

“The government of The Bahamas has decided, in accordance with the terms of the contracts held by a select group of school bus operators in Grand Bahama, Abaco and Eleuthera to utilize the 60-day termination clause with respect to those agreements,” the ministry said in a statement.

“After numerous complaints, and due to the cost of these five-year contracts, which were entered into by the PLP in 2015, these agreements were determined to be unfair and unsustainable.

“Therefore the ministry resolved that, rather than renegotiate with more than 30 contractors, requests for proposals were issued.

“It should be noted that the majority of the persons who had these contracts previously have retained those contracts through this new RFP process at considerable savings to the Ministry of Education.”

The ministry added that this process did not inconvenience students.

On Monday, Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Fred Mitchell blasted the government for canceling the contracts of school bus drivers on Grand Bahama.

“What is being done is wrong,” Mitchell said.

He added: “It is naked political victimization. It is bad management and anti-democratic. The minister of education must think again and bring immediate relief to the children of Grand Bahama and restore the contract to the old drivers.”

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