Capetonians are bracing themselves for a day of commuter chaos on Monday, with members of two taxi associations set to join thousands of ANC Youth League members in a march to the provincial legislature as part of a campaign for “economic freedom” in the province.
The league has threatened to bring the city to a complete standstill, declaring on Monday a “public holiday” for Western Cape residents so everyone gets the chance to join the march.
Khaya Yozi, the league’s Dullah Omar region chairman, was adamant on Saturday that “absolutely no taxis
will be taking people to their work places”, although acting secretary for both taxi organisations, Ricky Mve, said taxis would be running as normal.
The march participants would take in the ANC, Cosatu, the SA Students Congress (Sasco), the SA National Civics Organisation, the Congress of SA Students and the Islamic Unity Convention.
Executive members of the two taxi organisations met on Saturday afternoon to thrash out the details of the march.
Afterwards Mve confirmed they would join the march and gave the assurance that taxis would not block city roads.
Meanwhile, police and city law enforcement officials have reassured residents they have adequate resources to maintain law and order on Monday.
Premier Helen Zille has met provincial police commissioner General Arno Lamoer and the city’s community safety director Richard Bosman to discuss her concerns.
“General Lamoer and Mr Bosman assured me that the plans of the police and metro police are in place, and that all necessary steps will be taken to prevent intimidation and disruption of public transport.”
Zille said anyone
breaking the law “will be summarily arrested and charged”.
The organisers would also be held financially and personally liable for any damage to property.
Earlier, Zille had said she would only accept the marchers’ memorandum if the Youth League withdrew the threat to make Cape Town ungovernable, and issue a public apology.
But the league remained defiant and refused to apologise.
According to Zille, Transport MEC Robin Carlisle had given an assurance that public transport would function as normal on Monday. Police had also assured her that commuters would be protected.
City spokeswoman Kylie Hatton said marchers would assemble at Keizersgraght from 10am.
The march, starting at 11am, would take a route along Darling Street, left into Adderley Street, then on to the provincial legislature buildings in Wale Street.