Western Cape e-hailing drivers extorted by taxi drivers; MEC calls on NPA to prioritise cases

The Western Cape’s Transport & Public works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell has appealed to the National Prosecuting Authority to prioritise cases of extortion against members of the minibus taxi industry in the province

Mitchell says his department has been inundated with complaints from e-hailing operators. He says that minibus taxi operators went as far as impounding vehicles when they operate in certain communities and at some shopping malls.

The MEC has condemned the incident.

‘’I have recently engaged the e-hailing and minibus taxi industry leadership and asked that they condemn these criminal acts by their members.  These acts are criminal and I will use all legal avenues available to me to bring these actions to an end. When people linked to the taxi industry are involved in criminal acts such as extortion, intimidation and murder, my Department plays a clear supporting role to the SAPS and the NPA, whose mandate it is to ensure that the rule of law is applied.’’

Mitchell warned that should anyone be found guilty of these crimes, their licence may be revoked

‘’If any association or operator registered with the Provincial Taxi Registrar is found guilty of such a criminal act in a Court of Law, the Registrar and the Provincial Regulatory Entity may act to de-register such associations or operators and withdraw operating licences of individual owners.’’

Mitchell says he will not allow the transport system to be held at ransom.

‘’As the Minister responsible for the regulation of transport in the province, I will not allow a criminal few to hold the transport system to ransom. Commuters have a right to choose transport of their choice and not to be harassed and intimidated when they choose to use public transport modes and forms which do not suit a selfish few who are protecting their vested interests.’’

‘’Leaders of the minibus taxi industry must come out strongly against the ongoing criminal acts of extortion by their members. This is enough. Extortion will no longer be tolerated,’’ Mitchell added.

Extortion can be reported on 08600 10111.

Done By: Mitchum George