/ 20 April 2010

Durban taxi strike called off

The Durban taxi strike which left thousands of commuters stranded on Monday has been called off.

“The strike has been called off. They will start operating [Tuesday] morning,” KwaZulu-Natal provincial transport minister Willies Mchunu said in a statement on Monday night.

The decision to call off the strike was taken during a meeting between taxi operators and Mchunu held in Durban.

Durban taxi operators downed tools on Monday as they were unhappy about paying traffic fines and having their vehicles impounded daily without valid reasons.

Mchunu said it was resolved that a technical administrative committee comprised of department officials and metro police be established immediately.

“The technical team’s task is to formulate a comprehensive plan that will look into all the existing problems affecting the taxi industry in eThekwini Metro,” he said.

The task team would deal with allegations that metro police were targeting taxis.

It was also agreed that the issue of impounding of taxis would be looked at.

Charges laid against each individual taxi would be assessed, he said.

“We will continue engaging the taxi industry leadership, particularly through South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) in ensuring the taxi industry is progressive, governed and conducted within the framework and the spirit of good governance,” said Mchunu.

He said he believed the strike action was not necessary, saying that matters raised by taxi operators were being addressed. — Sapa