AGMA Holdings Limited on Friday, under its subsidiary, AXA Bus Service, launched a new fleet of 15 Deluxe Coaches worth K1.5 billion with its Chairperson, Mark Katsonga announcing to have retired from his position.
The new coach-buses set to hit the roads of Malawi were commissioned with special prayers by Father John Kuziona of ST Montfort Parish (CI) who urged local business people to involve God in their businesses.
In an interview with Nyasa Times after the prayers, Katsonga said the new fleet adds up to the 40 buses the company has, saying it is the company’s tradition to seek God’s intervention and blessings every time new busses are introduced.
Katsonga who boost of 40 years business –experience, said the new fleet signifies the company’s growth and that would help in exploring new routes as well as replace aging buses.
“God has saved me a lot that is why I always put him first. I urge other business people to do the same. The new buses mean growth and are good replacement of aging buses. The current fleet has been used for over seven years that is why we need to replace them with new ones. i ask other bus owners to do the same, replace old fleet,” explained Katsonga.
He therefore, commended government for removing import duty on buses, which he said would help to develop the transport.
“With the new fleet in place, we will be able to explore new routes. E are currently considering taking up international routes. We tried it before with Zimbabwe, Harare route but had to pull out because of accident”.
Katsonga revealed that he has retired as Chairperson of AGMA Holdings Limited but will retain his position as Chairman of Board of Trustees for AGMA Trust while acting as ordinary member for the AGMA Holdings.
He was however, quick to dismiss his retirement as one way of advancing his political career as People’s Transformation Movement (PPM).
Katsonga said: “I have 40-years’ experience as businessman: eight years in bus industry. I have been successful in all my businesses, starting from selling oranges and vegetables back in my home village. I will be 62 next month, and I feel, it’s right time to step down for young and energetic blood. I can’t cling on forever”.
The company has appointed new chairperson to be unveiled soon and according to Katsonga, it will start training PSV drivers in order to address the shortage on the market.
Meanwhile, Katsonga has bemoaned some of the challenges affecting the transportation sector, which include inadequate experienced and well-trained mechanics; poor road infrastructure and lack of enough trained bus drivers.
“The country doesn’t have enough trained bus drivers this is why we intend to start PSV training school. There is also a challenge in term s of controlling cash; the availability of spare parts has also affected the industry especially when there is forex shortage. And the unstable macro-economic structure, as Kwacha keeps on fluctuating, has greatly affected the bus business”.
AXA Bus Company is listed under AGMA Holdings which is one of the companies under by AGMA Trust owned by Katsonga.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :