Taxi Drivers On Strike In South Africa
Minibus Taxi drivers in Cape Town have been striking for over a week, after the city implemented its newly amended traffic by-laws. The new by-laws mean traffic officials can now confiscate cars for wrongdoings, such as not placing the number plate correctly or not having a valid driver’s license.
Hence, taxi drivers in Cape Town have expressed dissatisfaction with their taxis being seized. The South African National Taxi Council claimed their cars were being impounded for mistakes such as not wearing the seatbelt or using the emergency lane, whereas for other vehicle owners, they are only issued a fine.
The strike has mostly affected commuters and school children who are stranded at the Cape Town bus terminal. Some have had to trek for over four hours distances. Taxi drivers who try to carry people have watched their cars burnt to ashes by other drivers.
Five people have already lost their lives including a police officer and a British National, while about 120 suspects have been arrested since last Thursday for looting, destruction of property and public violence.
However, the South African National Taxi Council has denied these, saying such acts were fuelled by protesters and nots its members.
South African transport Minister, Sindisiwe Chikanga has ordered the release of all confiscated minibus taxis seized by Cape Town city authorities.
Kwatika Pamela, Editor