March 26, 2014

Minimum Service Standards Needed for TransJakarta

Jakarta Post –  Commuters and NGOs have urged Governor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to approve the draft proposal for minimum service standards for Transjakarta buses to guarantee an overall improvement in safety and services. 

Drafted by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), the proposal was first submitted in 2010 to the administration of former governor Fauzi Bowo. It is expected to be implemented in the form of a gubernatorial regulation (pergub), providing guidelines, vision and service targets.

David Tjahjana, the coordinator of a community of Transjakarta users Komunitas Suara Transjakarta, said Transjakarta should not be afraid of adopting minimum service standards. ”Transjakarta should not worry [about a service performance target]. The company simply needs to show a gradual improvement every year. It needs to have an incentive to improve,” he told The Jakarta Post over the phone on Friday.

He said once the minimum service standards were set, Transjakarta could focus on specific problems in order to improve its overall services. ”I believe passenger waiting time should be the main priority. Currently, the schedule is unpredictable and commuters cannot plan their journeys,” he said.

David added that many passengers complained about the inconsistency of bus arrivals in Corridor 8 (Lebak Bulus   Harmoni) and buses serving express routes such as the Senayan traffic circle to Kalideres. ”Even if the buses come once every hour, commuters will definitely prefer having an exact arrival time, which will give them more freedom to plan the rest of their day,” he said.

In addition, the majority of Transjakarta bus passengers still buy tickets at ticket booths because they find it difficult and inconvenient to top up the electronic cards. Occasionally, passengers experience delays as a result of problems associated with the Transjakarta buses themselves.

Meanwhile, Transjakarta spokeswoman Sri Ulina Pinem said the draft had been submitted to Jokowi. ”The SPM [Minimum Service Standards] of TJ [Transjakarta] is currently waiting for consideration by the governor,” she said on Thursday.

Rudy Thehamihardja, a member of the Indonesian Transportation Society (MTI), said he wondered why it took so long for the city to approve the minimum service standards proposal. He said that minimum service standards for public services were mandatory as stipulated in Government Regulation No. 65/2005 on guidelines to arrange and apply minimum service standards. ”Just compare Transjakarta with the public bus services in Singapore, where people get updates on the location of the buses and the estimated time of arrival, while here, there is no information whatsoever on arrival times,” he told the Post.

ITDP country director Yoga Adiwinarto said he hoped the minimum service standards for Transjakarta would the lead to widespread implementation of minimum requirements for all public transportation services. ”We need to have an organization that functions as an authority to implement the minimum service standards in public transportation,” he said.


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