By Dr Neil Campbell MPL, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Roads and Transport:
Misleading quotes by Gauteng MEC for Roads and Transport, Ismail Vadi, stating that the law does not allow for the subsidisation of taxis must not go unchallenged.
Vadi, who sits on the Ministerial-MEC committee for transport, is in a position to advise the often uninformed Minister of Transport, Dipuo Peters, on matters of both provincial and national importance regarding transport.
Whilst the debate on whether the taxi industry should be subsidised must still take place, the MEC cannot state that the law will not allow this.
Constitutionally there is no right to not subsides them, nor are they precluded. It would require someone taking the issue through the necessary legislative steps –nothing more or less.
Whether the taxi industry deserves these subsidies and has the technical ability to apply them must still be debated by a multi-party forum. Freedom to operate, fairness in awarding state subsidies and opportunities to all role players must take precedence.