Protest of Employees from Sofia’s Public Transport Blocked Three Intersections

Society | May 18, 2022, Wednesday // 09:37
Bulgaria: Protest of Employees from Sofia’s Public Transport Blocked Three Intersections

The protest of the workers from the transport companies of the capital's public transport has started. Those who are not at work will gather at three crossroads - the Five Corners, the Lion's Bridge and the Stochna Station.

At exactly 8 o'clock, protesters blocked the movement of the Five Corners (Pette Kyusheta). Traffic was stopped on both Lion's Bridge (Lavov Most) and the Stochna Station (Stochna Gara), BNR reported.

The three junctions will remain blocked until 9:30 a.m., when protesters are expected to march to the finance ministry building.

"The demands are to save the public transport in Sofia by paying attention to the Council of Ministers, the state, to pay attention, to give us enough money to be able to exist, because it is bad for us workers, but even worse and for the citizens themselves, if they are left without transport ", said Yordan Mladenov from the capital's motor transport.

According to the protesters, there is a real danger that they will lose their salaries or receive them late. They warned they would organize more protests.

Earlier, Ivan Kirilov - chairman of the federation of transport workers at “Podkrepa” explained how the protest will go.

"We will be there to protest until 9.30 a.m., after which we will march from the three places and gather in front of the Ministry of Finance. We are holding a short rally there, after which we will go to the Council of Ministers to continue the rally and protest.

“The subway will run, public transport will also run on schedule. Of course, where there are protests, it will be hampered for the time range I mentioned. This should not disturb the people, it should not disturb the students, who will have to show up in the classrooms at 8 o'clock, just when our protest begins.”

The workers in the capital's public transport are urging the state to co-finance the sector and compensate for the losses due to the increased prices of natural gas and electricity.

"The state did not want to help Sofia Municipality. Due to the pandemic that pressed us for two years, the energy crisis and the ensuing war reduced revenues, jumped fuels, electricity and it is time for the Bulgarian state to help if it wants not only in the capital but in all major cities to have public transport ", commented to BNR Georgi Panayotov, chairman of “Podkrepa” in the Sofia Electric Transport.

There is a real danger that the capital's motor transport will not receive gas, Panayotov warned.

"Today we are taking a small step from the protests that will follow if they do not take measures," said Georgi Panayotov.

"We expect the state to co-finance the companies so that the workers can receive their salaries on time, employers pay their high prices for energy, spare parts, and to have more efficient public transport. In case no additional changes are made during the budget update funds, the probability of survival of public transport in its version is too minimal," said a protester working at the intersection of Lion's Bridge. He believes that "the moment is not far off when the full amount of salaries will not be given or will not be given on time".

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