Joburg announces taxi deal

2010-06-08 13:55

Nearly half the minibus taxis operating between Soweto and Ellis

Park will be removed from Johannesburg’s roads, Mayor Amos Masondo has

announced.

In return for handing in the vehicles, the taxi owners would get

shares in a new bus operating company.

Masondo said: “This project is about transformation and seeks to

improve the quality of life of commuters and residents.”

According to the agreement, 585 minibus taxis would be removed from

the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit system’s 25.5km route between Soweto and Ellis

Park stadium.

Pete Harris, who is the head of the facilitation team between taxi

operators and the city, said there were currently about 1200 taxis operating on

that route.

He said: “The taxis will be handed in and exchanged for money to

buy shares in the bus operating company.”

The chairperson of the Greater Johannesburg Regional Taxi Council,

Eric Motshwane, said the taxi owners would get between R50?000 and R60?000 per

taxi.

The 585 shareholders would then not be allowed to put another taxi

out on that route.

However, they would be permitted to sell one taxi and keep another

already operating on that route because the agreement was not meant to replace

the taxi transport system.

The shareholders signed a negotiation closure agreement on

Friday.

According to Sicelo Mabaso, chairperson of the Top Six Taxi

Association, the bus operating company would be formally constituted soon.

All shareholders would be required to formally accept a written

offer from the city.

Board members and managers were yet to be appointed but if

everything went according to plan, the current bus operating company, Clidet,

would formally hand over to the new company on September 1.

A message from Transport Minister Sbu Ndebele was read out at the

event: “We would like to salute the commitment, far-sightedness and courage

shown by the minibus operators and their associations who have stuck with this

process over several years, often in the face of threats and intimidation.”

 

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