Manipulation of diesel allowances creates transportation crisis in Daraa

The designated stop for minibusses in the town of Muzayrib, western rural Daraa, June 11, 2024 (Enab Baladi/Halim Muhammad)

The designated stop for minibusses in the town of Muzayrib, western rural Daraa, June 11, 2024 (Enab Baladi/Halim Muhammad)


The public transportation movement in Daraa governorate, southern Syria, has been experiencing a shortage of means of transport since the beginning of this June, causing queues of people waiting for buses at public stations.

The crisis coincided with the period of exams for preparatory and secondary certificate students, as well as the upcoming Eid al-Adha, which increased the need for movement and transportation.

The reasons for the crisis are attributed to a defect in supplying vehicles with subsidized diesel via the electronic card, prompting many drivers to refrain from working.

Rising transportation costs

Duaa, a third-year high school student, paid 50,000 Syrian pounds as a fare for a round trip from Muzayrib to the city of Daraa, where she is taking her literary secondary exams.

Duaa told Enab Baladi that this situation has been recurring for a week due to the absence of buses on the town’s route, forcing her and three other classmates to hire a taxi from the town to the city, costing them 200,000 Syrian pounds, which they shared.

She explained that public transportation costs from Muzayrib to Daraa are usually about 2,000 Syrian pounds, but the lack of means of transport has raised concerns among the students about not arriving on time for exams.

Meanwhile, Salam al-Mohammad (33 years old) waited for three hours at the bus station in Muzayrib, and when no buses came, she returned home without buying Eid clothes for her children.

The same situation was repeated on the Tal Shihab route in western rural Daraa, where Iman (30 years old) waited for about three hours without finding a bus as well.

Iman told Enab Baladi that she, along with several other passengers, had to hire a taxi, paying 30,000 Syrian pounds for her share.

Queues of people waiting for transportation are evident at the stations in Daraa, especially since residents are buying Eid clothes and necessities at this time.

Alaa, a government employee from Tal Shihab who works in Daraa, told Enab Baladi that he is now paying high fares exceeding his salary, expressing concern over the continuation of this situation for a longer period.

He added that it is unreasonable to pay nearly 50,000 Syrian pounds a day for transportation.

Reasons for the crisis

Several bus drivers complained about not receiving their full allowances (15 liters of subsidized diesel daily). One of them, who works on the Daraa-Tal Shihab route and requested anonymity, said that the allowances were reduced to five liters at the beginning of June.

He added that this reduction forces the bus owner to procure diesel from the local market at a price of 18,000 Syrian pounds per liter.

The local market has seen an increase of about 5,000 Syrian pounds per liter of diesel since the beginning of June, whereas in May, the price did not exceed 13,000 Syrian pounds.

Each owner of a public transport vehicle has an electronic card that specifies the daily diesel allowance based on the distance from the governorate center. The drivers lodged complaints with the Fuel Directorate, and despite promises to resolve the issue, the cards still grant only five liters instead of 15 liters.

Another driver working on the Muzayrib route said that some cards allow only two liters, some one liter, and others five liters, without any clear reason for this discrepancy.

He added that this irregularity in fuel quantities has caused drivers to refrain from working, creating a crisis and queues at the stations.

Despite the application of GPS monitoring for public vehicles in most provinces controlled by the Syrian regime, it is still not implemented in Daraa.

A minibus driver on the Muzayrib-Daraa route told Enab Baladi that they paid for the tracking device a year ago, but it has not been activated to this moment.

Previously, Kamal al-Abdullah, the member of the executive office in Daraa, stated in remarks reported by the government-run Tishreen newspaper that installing GPS devices falls under the jurisdiction of the Traffic Engineering Branch, which is not currently available in Daraa.


النسخة العربية من المقال

Related Articles

  1. Prices soar in Daraa due to fuel shortage
  2. Daraa: Low demand after fare rise; taxi drivers sell subsidized gasoline
  3. Transportation and dormitory: Basic suffering of Daraa students in Damascus
  4. Daraa: Doubling prices for subsidized bread and manipulation of weight

Propaganda distorts the truth and prolongs the war..

Syria needs free media.. We need your support to stay independent..

Support Enab Baladi..

$1 a month makes a difference..

Click here to support