'Taxi drivers' membership payments create expectation they can start operating'

Nearly 50 minibus taxis were impounded on Monday after illegally blockading Somerset Road in Green Point just outside the Gallows Hill Driving Licence Testing Centre.

According to the Western Cape Transport MEC Donald Grant, about seven taxi drivers were arrested.

The taxi operators are demanding that the City of Cape Town issue them with operating licences.

Grant says the City's senior officials on Monday met with the taxi drivers to try and resolve the issue.

Read: Cape Town taxis barricade Somerset Road, demand operating permits

We are definitely going to continue with law enforcement, there is no other option.

Donald Grant, MEC for Transport and public works - Western Cape Government

The core of these blockages has to do with the violence in Hout Bay last month.

Donald Grant, MEC for Transport and public works - Western Cape Government

Read: Still no taxis operating between Hout Bay and CPT following deadly shooting

Grant says there are about 14 000 minibus taxis operating in the Western Cape and an estimated 7000 are operating illegally.

According to the law, drivers must belong to a taxi association and money is paid for this membership in the expectation of getting a licence.

These payments made to the taxi association creates an expectation that drivers can start operating, even when a licence from the City has not yet been issued.

But according to the law, taxis must have an operating license from the city.

Donald Grant, MEC for Transport and public works - Western Cape Government

The City is doing its best to resolve this matter.

Donald Grant, MEC for Transport and public works - Western Cape Government

There has to be a different operating model and we have to look at the laws and the regulations and that is not a short-term solution.

Donald Grant, MEC for Transport and public works - Western Cape Government

To hear the rest of the conversation, listen below:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 'Taxi drivers' membership payments create expectation they can start operating'


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