Taxi boss to contest elections

2014-04-04 00:00

THE KZN Transport Alliance general secretary Bafana Mhlongo says the alliance’s political wing is ready for next month’s elections.

He said their targeted voters were also looking forward to the polls. The wing was first registered with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) in 2006, but at that time, the idea to contest as a political party was canned after numerous meetings to find a way forward. Mhlongo said together with members from affiliate taxi associations they decided to register with the IEC for next month’s election, although they will be contesting on the provincial level.

Mhlongo, an attorney by profession, said they have submitted a list comprising 20 candidates to the IEC. He said the candidates are from different taxi associations around the province.

“Of the more than 50 associations, a number of them raised the R45 000, which is required to register for the provincial elections. Our main aim was to contest nationally, but due to financial constraints, we settled for the provincial elections,” said Mhlongo.

Some associations contributed R7 000 each, others less.

He said they targeted taxi bosses and their employees, including taxi conductors and vendors in taxi ranks. The aim of contesting in these elections is to have a representative in government.

“We are not taken care of because we are not represented. Projects that were introduced by government took jobs away from our industry, including the recapitalisation programme that made life difficult for taxi owners,” said Mhlongo.

The alliance has about 20 000 registered members.

Its founding member and president Gerald Ferror said the executive and management were not part of the political wing of the association.

“We have not given mandate for Mhlon­go to go to the polls, but to avoid creating animosity, we will not make an issue out of this,” said Ferror.

Mhlongo hit back, saying Ferror was a liar.

“He and his friends in their respective associations have not paid the required fee, so they cannot be part of this process. When the political wing was initially registered, he and some of those who are now left out were part of the process. Only those who contributed towards raising the R45 000 are part of this particular process,” said Mhlongo.

He gave The Witness copies of the forms that all those who were involved in the initial registration process had to fill in. The forms were filed with the IEC.

When The Witness reported on the alliance’s intention to contest the elections on February, political analyst Protas Madlala said even if the alliance won a seat or two, they would have little or no contribution in Parliament.

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