The Western Cape government has shut the main taxi route between Bellville and Paarl for now. The ongoing issues relate to who, between Cata and Codetta, controls this route. Picture: Leon Lestrade/African News Agency/ANA.
The Western Cape government has shut the main taxi route between Bellville and Paarl for now. The ongoing issues relate to who, between Cata and Codetta, controls this route. Picture: Leon Lestrade/African News Agency/ANA.

Situation along closed Cape taxi route showing signs of stability

By Sisonke Mlamla Time of article published Jul 29, 2021

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Cape Town - The situation on Cape Town's disputed Paarl to Cape Town taxi route appears to have been stabilised after it was closed to the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) and Congress of Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta), following deadly shootings.

Transport and Public Works MEC Daylin Mitchell said there were currently no disruptions on the affected closed routes.

Mitchell said he was pleased with the current operation and thanked commuters for working with them on the new transport arrangements.

This after Mitchell instructed several minibus taxi ranks to close for two months to bring stability and peace between the two taxi associations, after more than 20 people were shot and killed this month in the ongoing taxi violence.

The closure included the B97 route, between Bellville and Mbekweni (Paarl), two taxi ranks in Mbekweni, certain local route loading lanes at the Bellville Public Transport Interchange (PTI), the long-distance facility at the Bellville PTI, the Paint City rank in Bellville, and an informal rank in Bellville.

"I know this has been a very difficult time for many people, and I again reiterate my commitment to ensuring the safety of our residents," he said.

Mitchell said the arbitration process between Cata and Codeta was currently ongoing.

SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) provincial spokesperson Gershon Geyer supported Mitchell’s decision for the sake of commuters' safety.

"We hope this decision will bring stability to the industry," said Geyer.

Social Justice Coalition (SJC) called for the government to find long lasting solutions to address the ongoing challenges of commuters, both in the province and in the country at large.

"It is not enough for the government to keep treating this matter as though it is one of haphazard nature when, in fact, it has been ongoing for years," said the SJC.

Transport and Public Works standing committee chairperson in the provincial legislature Ricardo Mackenzie has vowed to intervene, saying he would be meeting with major stakeholders in the industry, to review efforts to combat recent taxi violence, today.

He said he has invited Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz, MEC Daylin Mitchell, the national Department of Transport, the Passenger Rail Agency of SA, Santaco, police, Golden Arrow Bus Service, and safety and security mayoral committee member JP Smith to all brief the committee on the matter.

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