The Democratic Alliance condemns the violent action by taxi owners in the Eastern Cape today. When one has to rely on a culture of fear and violence to make a point, this destroys the very freedom that lies at the heart of our constitutional democracy.
The Eastern Cape is in turmoil as the entire public transport system came to a halt when SANTACO (South African Taxi Council) took to the streets and launched a strike action in the province. Many children have been unable to get to schools and businesses continue to lose important income.
The Department placed a moratorium on the issuing of operating licences to taxi owners which has led to the current protests. We call on the MEC for Tansport, Weziwe Tikana, to urgently table the reasons for this moratorium. These reasons must be interrogated and studied closely to find solutions.
Under the current economic climate in our province, this strike action is counterproductive as it will destroy jobs.
The DA believes that there are other ways to engage the government; these include positive engagement through regular meetings with the Department and complying with the law in order to get the needed subsidy.
It is critical that the public transport system in the province be normalized as soon as possible. She should engage with SANTACO to resolve matters in an amicable manner. — Marshall von Buchenroder MPL, Shadow MEC for Transport