The taxi strike in the Western Cape has ended and will not resume on Thursday, 24 November, despite reports on social media warning of another strike.
Despite calls for a second strike, a Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) spokesperson said their taxis will be operating as normal on Thursday.
Western Cape taxi strike
Blue Dot Pilot
The two-day taxi strike began on Monday and concluded on Tuesday when members of the various taxi associations marched to Premier Alan Winde’s office.
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Protesters demanded that the incentive Blue Dot Pilot programme be extended. The goal of the pilot programme was to assist the collapsing public transport system.
“The WCG has shown […] it is possible to change the taxi industry [and have taken] the results of the programme to national government so it could be rolled out nationally,” the WC government said.
No taxi strike on Thursday
Cata spokesperson Nkululeko Sityebi said: “There’s no strike on Thursday, that’s fake news, and those people sharing such information want to portray the taxi industry as dirty”.
SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) apologised for the inconvenience caused and said all operations will return to business as usual:
“We thank you for your understanding during the course of the stay-away action. We apologise […] ensure operations will resume effectively from Wednesday”.
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Violence ‘won’t be tolerated’
Meanwhile, The Democratic Alliance’s Minister of Mobility in the Western Cape, Daylin Mitchell, confirmed it’s back to “business as usual”.
He said the Western Cape government “respects the rights of the minibus taxi industry to shut down, but criminal acts and violence will not be tolerated”.
This after reports of attacks on Golden Arrow and MyCiTi buses in Khayelitsha and Hout Bay, as well as the stoning of private vehicles.
Impact on communities
Mitchell said the lawlessness and incidents of violence were “unacceptable and a flagrant disregard of the rights of innocent commuters”.
Moreover, taxi strike had a “severe impact on people travelling to and from work, school children who are writing exams, and to those who tried to access services such as healthcare”.
ALSO READ: Patient inside ambulance killed by angry mob in Atteridgeville
Mithcell said the economy is only now starting to recover from a “very tough two years” and cannot afford incidents such as these to set the province back.
He vowed to use all regulatory and legislative mechanisms at his disposal as “these senseless acts are putting jobs at risk, they are putting lives at risk”.