DA KZN: Transport department is failing taxi commuters

Rafeek Shah, MPL

DA KZN Spokesperson on Transport

KZN’s Transport Department could and should be doing more to stem the blood loss as a result of ongoing taxi violence in the province.

Last week’s violence in the Stanger area is indicative of a growing trend of lawlessness in the taxi industry and the apparent lack ability of the DOT and the SAPS to get a grip on an extremely dangerous situation.

It is unacceptable that the lives of commuters should be placed in jeopardy each time they are in the vicinity of a taxi rank or when they travel in a taxi.

The DA will today submit the following parliamentary questions to provincial Transport MEC, Willies Mchunu in a bid to ascertain exactly what the department is doing about this ongoing problem;

–          What is KZN’s Transport department doing to establish a good working relationship between itself and the taxi industry?

–          What mechanisms has the department put in place for intra-association conflict resolution and conflict between competing associations?

–          What security measures are in place in and around taxi ranks and what is the role of the SAPS in this?

–          Does the department have a joint task team with SAPS to deal with taxi violence and to check for illegal weapons?

If these measures are not in place then the department is failing in its mandate to provide an efficient and safe transport system for commuters.  The hiring of private security cannot be viewed as a solution.  Why should the taxi environment be a war zone in the first place?

There is something intrinsically wrong.

There are rules and regulations that govern the taxi industry.  It is the department’s job to ensure that they are complied with.