VMRO-DPMNE: Buy public transport tickets by texting

Vlado Gjorčev, 05.01.2016

Buy your bus ticket by sending a text message. In case of ticket control, present the received confirmation code. The current system for purchasing electronic tax stamps will also be upgraded. Institutions in charge: Ministry of Information Society and Administration, the Public Transport Authority. Budget: 500,000 denars. Due date: December 2015

On November 11, 2015, the media revealed details on the Public Transport Authority’s (JSP) new charging system:

“The new charging system will allow passengers to pay by calling the number 185, by lightly touching the validator with the mobile phone and via text message.” (Retrieved: 05.01.2016)

A press release from December 18, 2015, stated:

“JSP will increase ticket prices for those without electronic cards, with a single ticket bought on the bus costing 60 denars instead of the present 35. The 30 denar ticket from the ticket offices is no longer available. Alternatively, passengers without an electronic card can pay with their smartphone, at a charge of 40 denars.” (Retrieved: 05.01.2016)

After a public outcry caused by JSP’s price hike, which would have come into effect on January 1, 2016, the City of Skopje discarded the plan. This also postponed the option to pay for the bus ticket by sending a text message.

On December 19, 2015, a single day after the plan was announced, Skopje mayor Koce Trajanovski announced at a press conference that the ticket price will remain 35 denars.

“I told you the old price is back. The new plan is scrapped, the price is 35 denars again. We want to go electronic, we want to use smartphones that span the globe, but we want to pay cash. Fine, the price stays 35 denars.” (0:30 to 0:45 in the video)

During the press conference, Igor Janušev, JSP’s general manager, said:

“You can purchase a single ticket from the driver in cash. All other ticket types are now only available electronically and will be saved to your electronic card.” (0:46 to 0:58 in the video. Retrieved on 05.01.2016)

In conclusion, the campaign promise “buy public transport tickets by texting” has been broken

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This article was created within the framework of the Project to increase the accountability of the politicians and political parties Truthmeter implemented by Metamorphosis. The article is made possible by the generous support of the National Endowment for Democracy(NED) and The Balkan Trust for Democracy (BTD), a project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, an initiative that supports democracy, good governance, and Euroatlantic integration in Southeastern Europe. The content is the responsibility of its author and does not necessarily reflect the views of Metamorphosis, National Endowment for Democracy, the Balkan Trust for Democracy, the German Marshall Fund of the United States, or its partners.

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