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Rome’s Transport System Faces “Meltdown,” On Brink Of Collapse

Rome’s Transport System Faces “Meltdown,” On Brink Of Collapse

New York City’s deteriorating subway has a rival for world’s most dysfunctional public transportation system. After only three months on the job, Bruno Rota, the head of Rome’s public-transit company has announced that he’s leaving his post, saying that the Italian capital city’s decaying transportation system should declare bankruptcy, according to Reuters.

Rota’s departure is an embarrassment for the anti-establishment five-star movement and one of its most high-profile politicians, Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi. Since taking office last year, Raggi’s administration has been paralyzed by internal tumult while the city’s infrastructure has continued to decay. The party’s failures in Rome suggest that it’s not prepared to govern, and may have contributed to Five-Star’s losses in a series of municipal elections last month. Meanwhile, the situation could hurt the party’s chances in next year’s general election.

Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi

“Bruno Rota quit Atac on Friday, just three months after taking charge of the Italian capital’s bus, metro and tram network, saying he was unable to salvage the firm and feared possible legal action tied to any eventual collapse.

“It is an appalling scandal,” said Rota, who was called down to Rome after helping to turn around the transport system in the northern city of Milan. “The situation is worse than you can imagine,” he told la Repubblica newspaper.

Rota’s dramatic departure has triggered yet another crisis for the city’s 5-Star administration, which won power last year in what was seen as a litmus test of whether the anti-establishment group was ready to run Italy.”

City officials are publicly criticizing Raggi, saying that Rome needs a “change in direction” after the city nearly adopted water rationing laws last week amid a worsening drought.

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