SA Roadlink gets court order to continue operations

National bus operator SA Roadlink obtained an interim court order in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Friday preventing KwaZulu-Natal transport minister Bheki Cele from suspending its operating licence.

Judge Isaac Madondo said that there was a possibility that SA Roadlink would suffer irreparable harm and that Cele had not provided any evidence before the court that there would be more accidents.

Cele has to file replying papers by December 28 and both SA Roadlink and Cele’s legal team will be back in court on January 8 to argue the matter.

Cele withdrew the company’s operating permit pending the outcome of an investigation into Tuesday morning’s crash, involving an SA Roadlink bus and two other vehicles, which claimed the lives of 11 people.

Earlier on Friday, Cele told a press conference in Pietermaritzburg that he was due to meet with the management of the company when he was informed that the company had lodged papers seeking an interdict against Cele’s decision to stop the company’s operations in the province.

Cele on Wednesday announced that he was withdrawing the operator’s licence and that all its buses would have to stop operating in the province from midnight on Friday.

Cele said: “Roadlink has taken us to court. They are trying to nullify the decision we have taken.”

He said the planned meeting with the company’s management had not taken place.

The papers had been served on the national Transport Department and had been forwarded by them to the provincial department.—Sapa

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