Saturday, March 26, 2022

Transport MEC studying CATA, CODETA memorandum; ''disturbed'' by violent protest

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has less than a week to respond to the memorandum of grievances of local taxi associations.

CODETA and CATA members marched to Winde’s offices on Thursday.

Transport & public works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell, says he’s disturbed by Thursday’s violent protest, adding that he is ‘’studying the memorandum that was handed over to the Western Cape Government (on Thursday), but will not allow the other events of the day to go unchallenged.’’

Mitchell says he has met with the South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) and have requested it to take action against the CATA region. He further condemned the violent actions which included the torching of buses, intimidation of other operators and the disruption of travel routes.

‘’This is criminal behaviour that should be addressed by the South African Police Service (SAPS). We will not tolerate this kind of flagrant disregard for the law. This is a threat against the provincial government and the people of the Western Cape.’’

The MEC says he has instructed officials in his department to launch various actions, including:

1.   Drafting a notice to declare the Nyanga area a high risk in respect of taxi violence.

2.   Compliance notices – The Office of the Registrar has sent out notices to all associations to comply with the Code of Conduct and Standard Constitution for minibus taxis, following the unrest in Nyanga.

‘’All associations are required to act against any misconduct perpetrated by their members and drivers. Operators and drivers are not permitted to intimidate or threaten any person. We will have no hesitation to suspend or deregister associations and/or members who violate any relevant statutory prescripts,’’ said Mitchell.

3.   Suspension of the Special Regulatory Process – The MEC says it will suspend this process for all CODETA and CATA-affiliated associations should the violence continue. Mitchell met with the City of Cape Town who agreed to the terms.

‘’This means that no new operating licences will be issued to members of these associations until the suspension is lifted.

4.   Red status – Blue Dot project – Given the ongoing violence, a decision has been taken to place the CATA and CODETA regions in red status.

‘’This means that no project payments will be made to these regions until such time that they act to get their members and drivers to refrain from violent behaviour and damage to property.’’

5.   Cancellation of operating licences –Mitchell threatened to cancel operating licences, where operators and drivers have violated the conditions under which those operating licences were issued.

6.    Ongoing dialogue

 

Mitchell has condemned the incident, thanking those operators who transported commuters, despite the protest.

‘’I will not stand by and allow a handful of opportunists to hold the commuters of the Western Cape hostage. I have said it before, and I maintain that illegal and criminal acts will not be tolerated. Thank you to those public transport operators who continued to transport members of the public despite the volatile situation.’’

‘’I wish to thank officials of the Department of Transport and Public Works who worked tirelessly to source information and advise on possible remedies and actions. I further wish to thank our Traffic Law Enforcement directorate, the Department of Community Safety, members of the City of Cape Town law enforcement corps and the South African Police Service for their support in containing the violence,’’ added Mitchell

 

PICTURED: Transport & Public Works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell

Done By: Mitchum George

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