Eastern Cape government and taxis strike a deal

R1.7 million for taxi associations

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Photo of taxis blocking road
A deal has been struck between taxi operators and the Eastern Cape government after a taxi shutdown earlier this month. Photo: Joseph Chirume

The Eastern Cape provincial government is to pay R1.7 million to taxi operators in an agreement reached after a taxi shutdown which brought business and schools to a standstill in parts of the province.

Taxi organisations protested on 10 June demanding that transport MEC, Weziwe Tikana resign. They accused her of refusing to issue them with operating permits and complained about fines of R9,000 imposed on operators who carry passengers without a valid permit.

Eastern Cape government provincial spokesperson, Sizwe Kupelo said this week that a team from the office of the premier, the provincial treasury and the taxi industry had been appointed to look into the taxi operators’ concerns, and a grant of R1.7 million had been made for “the facilitation of a transformative and regulative policy of the taxi industry in the province”.

Luyanda Bandele, spokesperson for Uncedo taxi association, welcomed the agreement.

Santaco regional secretary Siyanda Mbanjwa said the money would be used to educate taxi operators to conform to the National Traffic Act, and would also enable Santaco to visit members all over the province.

“We intend to use this grant to travel to hot spots like Mthatha and other areas rocked by taxi violence,” he said.

“We are also on a massive outreach program to educate our members about the requirements needed when applying for a permit to avoid being arrested by the traffic cops.”

TOPICS:  Government Transport

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