Durban taxi drivers embark on stayaway

2013-06-14 07:55
(File, Sapa)

(File, Sapa)

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Durban - Commuters in Durban have been urged to use buses and trains from Friday as minibus taxi drivers embark on an indefinite stayaway.

Drivers affiliated to the South African Taxi Workers’ Organisation (Satwo) are protesting against conditions of their employment.

Satwo spokesperson Thulani Hlengwa said their members were fighting for their rights.

“Drivers want to be hired permanently. They want a time for clocking in and knocking off,” Hlengwa said yesterday afternoon.

Satwo, founded last year and based in Durban, has among its aims the goal of changing the industry’s image by promoting peace and stability in the sector.

It is not clear how much support the organisation enjoys and how much impact the strike would have.

Hlengwa said he doubted any taxis would be on the roads.


But he added it was possible drivers from other organisations not aligned to Satwo would ignore the protest and report for duty.

This, Hlengwa said, could see them being attacked. “To stay safe, people will have to use buses and trains,” he said.

He warned that the stayaway could go on indefinitely if their concerns were not addressed by taxi bosses.

The transport department warned protesting drivers to leave their working colleagues alone.

Department spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane said: “The message from the MEC is clear: people can exercise their constitutional right and embark on a strike, but they must do so by not intimidating those who are working.

“There is a clear plan of action for enforcement to deal decisively with anyone who is misbehaving.”

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