Port Elizabeth’s biggest taxi rank has no toilets

2017-04-27 08:54

Port Elizabeth- A taxi rank in Port Elizabeth has been operating without functioning public toilets for the past seven years. Commuters hide behind food stalls to relieve themselves, while others use a dilapidated building nearby.

The Crossroad Taxi Rank in Motherwell is the busiest taxi rank in Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality in the mornings.

Thousands of commuters use it. It is run by Uncedo Taxi Association.

Rank manager Lunga Jikani explained: "I don’t remember this place having a public toilet.The municipality built that building in 2010 with the intention of turning it into toilets but it was never opened to the public. The infrastructure is now an eyesore and dilapidating. Vandals stripped all the valuables because no one took care of it. It was just left to decay."

Commuters wait for transport at the Motherwell taxi rank. (Joseph Chirume/GroundUp)

Jikani said: "It is really embarrassing to see our valued commuters squatting behind those shacks to relieve themselves. Where is the culture of Ubuntu if adults are seen by their children relieving in public? It is also not healthy to residents who live around this area. We have been complaining for many years to the municipality about the need for public toilets but our efforts have so far been fruitless."  

"These shacks are used by food vendors to prepare and sell their food from. It becomes very dangerous to health when people relieve themselves at the back of the shacks. We also need a public water tap for us and the commuters to use," he said.

Neliswa (surname withheld by GroundUp) lives in NU 8 and works as a domestic worker in Mount Pleasant.

She said: "I had a running stomach a couple of weeks ago. It was a scary experience because I had to plead with the taxi driver to stop along the N2 Freeway so I could use the bush to relieve myself. I felt embarrassed and lost my dignity. The municipality should repair that toilet for commuters to use."

A resident who refused to say his name but lives near the taxi rank said: "We are faced with the problem of escalating crime at this rank when it is in the night.

"The robbers hide in that disused toilet and launch their attacks from there.The building should either be demolished or repaired to deter criminals from using it.The municipality should do something urgently."

Spokesperson for the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, Mthubanzi Mniki, told GroundUp: "The situation will be followed up. We understand that issues of public toilets are also issues of dignity. It will be prioritised. The relevant department has already been informed."

Read more on:    port elizabeth  |  service delivery

Join the conversation!

24.com 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.

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 24.com 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.