Taxi industry changes lives

2015-05-29 06:00
Cutting the ribbon for the new house (from left) Harry Gwala District Municipality Mayor Mluleki Ndobe, Santaco chairperson David Zibele Kheswa and house recipients Anele and Busisiwe Khumax

Cutting the ribbon for the new house (from left) Harry Gwala District Municipality Mayor Mluleki Ndobe, Santaco chairperson David Zibele Kheswa and house recipients Anele and Busisiwe Khumax

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THE taxi industry, under the umbrella­ of South African National Taxi Council (Santaco), has taken a step forwards improving the lives of needy people.

This comes after it showed it cares for its passengers and donated 450 school uniforms to pupils, 35 blankets to elderly people and food parcels to 35 households at Jolivet in Ixopo­ on Monday.

They handed this over with the support of the Harry Gwala District and Ubuhlebezwe Local municipalities.

Many people described this as an historic event as many have the perception that taxi drivers and owners are rude and violent towards the clients­ they serve, but Santaco, in the Harry Gwala area, has changed this.

The local association also built a house in Jolivet for children who were left without parents after a taxi accident that took the lives of 16 people from Jolivet a few years ago.

Santaco donated a house to this family as part of their plough-back-to-the-community programme.

The Harry Gwala District Municipality Mayor Mluleki Ndobe also showed kindness by donating two double beds and two wardrobes to the family.

The entourage then proceeded to the community hall that was packed with teachers, pupils, the traditional leader, government departments and the community where about 450 school uniforms were distributed to needy pupils.

Harry Gwala Regional Santaco chairperson, Divide Zibele Kheswa, said their aim is to change the mindset that taxi men are rude and violence. “We are promoting a good relationship with our passengers,” said Kheswa.

The Department of Education was represented by the deputy director general and the district director who witnessed this unique gesture by Santaco­.

Pupils, teachers and parents­ were almost in tears thanking Santaco and the mayors for the contribution.

As if that was not enough, the elders, who were part of the event, were given blankets. This is a direct response to two programmes­ - Operation Sukuma Sakhe­, a delivery model for the government­ working with the private sector and civil society, and in response to a call by the president that education must be a societal issue, meaning that all sectors of the society must make a meaningful contribution to education. “This is the only way how we will take South Africa forward,” said Ndobe­

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