Taxify launches partnership with Namola to improve driver safety

In an attempt to improve passenger and driver safety, ride-hailing app Taxify launched an in-app safety button in partnership with Namola on Wednesday.

There are plans to roll it out to all drivers across the country by the end of the month.

The launch comes after a series of attacks on Taxify and Uber drivers in recent months, including the brutal murder of Siyabonga Langelihle Ngcobo, 21, in March. Ngcobo's body was found in the back of a burnt-out car in Pretoria.

READ: Taxify investigating murder of driver found in boot

Taxify hopes that its partnership with Namola, an emergency assistance app, will address the concerns of driver safety and security.

Taxify's country manager Gareth Taylor said the in-app function was launched at a driver summit in Johannesburg on Wednesday, which was attended by more than 150 Taxify drivers.

"Rider and driver safety is our first and foremost priority. The safety button will allow Taxify drivers to access rapid deployment of the correct emergency response should they find themselves in danger," Taylor said.

"The welfare of our drivers is our foremost priority. The partnership with Namola is the first very important step towards addressing safety concerns. Taxify has a zero-tolerance approach to violence," Taylor added.

ALSO READ: #MakeSAsafe – Namola app could be 'Uber for police'

Taylor said several training stations were set up at the event, which dealt with topics such as anti-hijacking, self-defence and vehicle maintenance safety.

Namola's CEO Peter Matthaei said the partnership with Taxify should be able to alleviate some of the risks faced by Taxify drivers.

"Namola exists to help improve safety and security in South Africa. We are a community-focused application that aims to get citizens the fastest help possible in any emergency," he said.

"The partnership with Taxify will help alleviate some of the distressing situations that drivers can face. The app is available to all South Africans and has been found to be particularly useful in volatile areas."

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