Taxi commuters will once again be stranded on Thursday after Gauteng MEC of Roads and Transport Ismail Vadi announced the closure of taxi ranks in Johannesburg following violence between two associations.
Violence between Nancefield Dube West Taxi Association (Nanduwe) and the Witwatersrand Taxi Association (Wata) erupted last month when two taxi drivers were stabbed and killed.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) stated that they support the MEC’s move in hope that it will stem the violence that has not only endangered the lives of people but put the Johannesburg CBD and other routes to a standstill.
“No one is above the law, particularly those who take on the duty to transport their fellow citizens,” said spokesperson Neil Campbell.
In the past week, five people have been killed in Soweto and the police suspect that the incidents are linked to the recent taxi violence. No arrests have been made.
The DA also put MEC for Community Safety, Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane to the task.
“She must now ensure that officers from her department are deployed along these routes and ranks to ensure that neither Nanduwe nor Wata operate during the shutdown.”
Vadi was also urged to make alternative transport arrangements for the commuters who will be affected.
Buses and trains will be available for commuters during the shutdown.
The main taxi bases that will be affected include Mofolo Kwa-Mthethwa informal taxi rank, Makhetha Stores informal taxi rank, Dube station taxi rank, Makhetha Garage (Phefeni) taxi rank and Uncle Tom’s taxi rank.