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No taxi fare increases in WC

On Monday morning 22 June, Transport MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela met with the representatives of the Western Cape South SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) regarding a proposed taxi fare increase.

Santaco Western Cape has taken a decision not to increase taxi fares.

“I’m grateful to Santaco for showing leadership and engaging government and putting the passengers first as the people most affected by the fee increase” said Madikizela.

Santaco also agreed it will not embark on a strike, because it understands the provincial Department of Transport and Public Works has demonstrated a constructive approach, and is engaging with the body in good faith.

“The Western Cape government started the Red Dot project as part of relieving the taxi industry from Covid-19 hardships,” Santaco explained on its official Twitter account, lauding the minister’s “proactive thinking”.

“The industry will benefit from the project while doing essential work for our government.”

According to Madikizela, The Red Dot system has transported more than 12 000 health-care workers over 150 000 km since its launch on 18 May.

The service also transports members of the public to quarantine and isolation facilities across the Western Cape to accommodate those with or at risk of having Covid-19, and are unable to enter quarantine or isolation in their own homes.

Since this component of the service commenced operations on 30 May, it has transported almost 1 100 passengers across the province.

Nonetheless, Madikizela stressed, this does not mean government should relax, as there are a number of outstanding issues that must be addressed between them and the minibus taxi industry.

One of these pressing matters is the issuing of outstanding operating licences.

Madikizela will meet with the local authorities to deal with the issue of operating licences on 3 July.

One of the reasons it is focusing on the mini-bus taxi industry is that this business is not formalised, and can therefore not be subsidised by the government.

“Part of the engagements we have with the industry is to move with speed to formalise the industry, so they can be supported by government as they transport almost 50% of all public transport users.”

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