Half of Cape Town's taxis trading without operating licences - MEC

2015-09-17 19:33
Taxis. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Taxis. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Cape Town - Taxi operators found guilty of violent crimes should lose their operating licences, South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) president, Philip Taaibosch, said on Thursday.

He was speaking at a mediation initiative in Langa following years of tension between the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) and the Congress for Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta).

Close to 60 people have been killed in taxi violence since April 2012, Taaibosch said.

"Not a single life should be lost anymore in the name of the industry.

"I believe that when operators are found guilty of involvement in violence, all licences should be taken away from him. We can’t allow people to call us killers, or a law unto ourselves."

The gathering follows a reconciliation workshop in Worcester where Cata members resolved not to resort to violence during conflicts, to not recruit new members on routes where their drivers already operate and to not encroach on any unauthorised routes.

Transport and public works MEC Donald Grant said over-saturation is an issue on most of the province’s taxi routes.

Routes overtraded

"The City of Cape Town’s Integrated Transport Plan shows that more than 70% of the routes in the city area are overtraded. The situation is exacerbated by an increase in illegal operators," he said.

"Nearly 49% of taxi operators in the Cape Town area are plying their trade without valid operating licences. This is a clear indication that associations are still recruiting new members."

Municipalities will not support new applications on over-traded routes, Grant said.

"By recruiting new members, you are also reducing the profitability of operators on minibus-taxi routes. The end result is fierce competition for passengers and a fleet of ageing vehicles.

"This also manifests itself in route invasions and ultimately violent confrontations. We have to condemn the indiscriminate recruitment of new members and the invasion of existing routes. This is a recipe for bloodshed."

Read more on:    cape town  |  transport

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