Court arbitration process to resolve taxi violence begins - WC Transport MEC
- 'The closure of route B97 is because I couldn't stand by and see another senseless killing,' says W Cape transport MEC
- Mitchell says while only B97 was gazetted closed, taxis have chosen not to operate on other routes too
- He encourages taxis to operate in the routes that are open as commuters are being impacted
- The court arbitration process to find a solution to the ongoing taxi-related violence has begun
- Deaths related to taxi violence have ceased in the past few days, says Mitchell after 24 people died in the month of July
An arbitration process to resolve the ongoing taxi-related violence in the Western Cape is underway following an earlier failed mediation process.
The arbitration process started this week, so that is still ongoing because it is now a court process with a court-appointed arbitrator.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
Mitchell explains that government will also lead evidence in this process and promise to release information of the outcomes as soon as they are available.
Is government reviewing the proposal brokered by Saftu's Zelinzima Vavi and UDM's Banti Holomisa asks Refilwe?
Mitchell says it has been received and acknowledged by provincial and national transport ministries and is being reviewed by the legal advisors regarding the regulatory aspects.
I have received the proposal and obviously, there are requests and for lack of a better word, demands in that proposal which has obviously been escalated from a legal regulatory framework to the legal advisors, because I am not willing to compromise on the Rule of Law.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
Two requests were made by the taxi associations, one regarding Ters payments and another regarding subsidies to the taxi industries, but Mitchell says these are national transport ministry competencies and he cannot respond to that issue.
The industry in the Western Cape has been unregulated for a very long time and we have tried with the blue dot pilot project we are currently doing, is to incentivise the minibus taxi industry as an attempt to try and minimise the violence.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
It is about money and turf and trying to gain control over certain routes and ranks and we need to try and break that situation where the commuter becomes the pawn in this inter-transport system.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
Forcing commuters to take certain modes of transport has to end, he says.
While Mitchell gazetted the closure of taxi route B97 between Paarl/Mbekweni and Bellville, questions have been raised as to why this has impacted other routes.
All other routes that Cata and Codeta are operating on have not been closed. They chose to stop operations. So I call it more of a taxi strikeDaylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
They chose to stop operating and it is also, I suppose, a mechanism to try and stop any sort of violence because as per the gazette if the violence spirals out of control in other areas, I will have no option but to close those routes too.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
He says he commends the taxi movement on other routes by Codeta on Thursday as the closing of B97 was not intended to hamper all other routes.
I commend this movement as the commuter in the centre of this all is the one suffering.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
There are many other taxi associations in Cape Town that are not part of the stand-off. What has been their response?
There are many that say they are grateful for this intervention and then there are others who say they are paying the price for two associations that are trying to dictate to the industry and we can't allow it.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
24 killings took place in July, but in the last few days, there have been no direct taxi-related killings which I am grateful for. There seems to be calmer and stability though commuters are still scared and it will take a long time to rebuild trust with them.Daylin Mitchell, MEC for Transport and Public Works - Western Cape
Golden Arrow and Metrorail have added to these affected routes, he notes, but all aspects of the transport industry need to work together