Taxi industry loses key leader

2013-03-04 00:00

THULANI Phumuzamaswazi “TP” Kubheka (57), was an exceptional figure who held numerous leadership positions at many levels and in many offices across South Africa.

In each of those positions, and to every group he was leading or advising, he was the respected key.

Hailing from Newcastle in Northern KZN, he became involved in the public transport sector in 1985 and was a founding member of Sizwe Taxi Association, one of the country’s largest long-distance taxi associations the following year.

He then began advising the Department of Transport on public transport matters and went on to become the first registrar of taxis in KZN in 1994.

His contribution to the industry catapulted him to the pinnacle of the taxi industry.

He was able to ease any situation, and leave meetings with adversaries laughing and moving forward with him as their unofficial helmsman.

This ability became his brand mark, and he was constantly crossing the country, Cape Town today, Mpumalanga tomorrow, Durban in the evening, his cellphone rang almost every 30 seconds and he could conduct two conversations on his phones simultaneously.

And this was the grease that helped make the national taxi industry work.

One person, a moving well of advice and support, rushing to the next meeting that would not start without him, others waiting outside for an audience with him and all along, he would be playing pranks, joking, disarming and taking you with him.

His illness (kidney failure) kept him in hospital from December until his death on Friday. TP was robust, he was the go-to guy, he was invincible, but sadly and that’s what those close to him are battling to understand, he was human.

The vacuum felt by his family and colleagues is enormous, not from a commercial or industry perspective, but for the place he took inside all those who knew him. He will be buried in Newcastle on Saturday.

On Thursday, taxi operators will hold a memorial service at his home in Newcastle.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.