“The recent violent actions by taxi drivers during a protest over impounded vehicles, damaging municipal and private property, has once again highlighted the need to not only process operating licences for taxi drivers faster, but also the unacceptable nature of their protest at this delay” said IFP spokesperson for Transport, Mr Petros Sithole MP.
The taxi owners and operators threatened more violence if the 44 vehicles impounded were not released and their permits also sorted.
“The municipality must also be held accountable for allowing such a situation to develop. The failure to issue permits because of claims that municipal buses were sufficient for passengers, while charging the taxi industry fees for those unissued permits, is also a major cause of these violent protests”.
“It is unacceptable that the taxi industry in Durban resorted to acts of violence and threatening the general public over their grievances. This also shows the need for state intervention at municipal level in order to ensure that these actions do not take place. No matter how legitimate their grievances, taxis cannot be allowed to operate illegally and with impunity” said Sithole.
“The 17 people arrested during these protests must face the full might of the law and face the consequences of their actions. There is no place in our society for violence to be used as a threat in order to be heard. Taxi bosses should be in the forefront of curbing violence within their industry and not be leaders of this unacceptable violence” said Sithole.
Source : Inkatha Freedom Party