Calls for e-hailing service to be cancelled after more safety concerns emerge

An e-hailing services driver navigating the road. Picture: Unsplash

An e-hailing services driver navigating the road. Picture: Unsplash

Published May 8, 2024


The safety of women using the Bolt travel app has once again come under the spotlight with social media users calling for the service to be cancelled in South Africa.

This comes after harrowing images surfaced on X recently of a woman with a cut on her back which is believed to be a stab wound.

According to a post by Women For Change, a non-profit organisation that advocates for women’s and children’s rights, a group of friends were allegedly attacked by a Bolt driver in Table View, Cape Town after he allegedly refused to drop them off at their requested location.

“The driver allegedly started hitting the person sitting in the passenger seat, and when a fight erupted and the car stopped, the group of friends ran away. The driver ran after them and allegedly stabbed two of the women. No one has been arrested yet. #cancelbolt,” read the NPO’s post.

Following the attack, Bolt said that it was aware of the incident involving one of its drivers assaulting female riders in Cape Town, Table View, on May 4, 2024.

“We regard such conduct as completely unacceptable and strongly condemn it. Our team has reached out to the rider to offer support and find out what support she requires. Our senior Customer Support personnel will also be travelling to Cape Town to pay a courtesy to express our sympathy over the incident that has occurred,” said Bolt.

The e-hailing service added that upon learning of the incident, it immediately took action to block the driver from the platform while a thorough investigation is being conducted.

“The safety and well-being of our riders are our top priorities, and we do not tolerate any behaviour that compromises their safety or security,” said Bolt.

Sandra Buyole, Bolt’s PR manager at Bolt also said that that they were cooperating with local authorities for the investigation of the incident and would take all necessary steps to prevent such occurrences in the future.

“Bolt remains committed to providing a safe and reliable transport option for all our users,” said Buyole.

This is not the first time that the e-hailing service has had to deal with outrage when it comes to passenger safety.

In April 2022, Gauteng passenger Chantelle Mokau, alleged that a Bolt driver punched her in the face. At the time, she provided pictures on social media of her bloodied nose.

Recently, the High Court in Johannesburg sentenced e-hailing driver, Emmanuel Mudau, to two life imprisonment terms plus 60 years after convicting him on four counts of rape, four of kidnapping and two counts of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

According to the Gauteng NPA, Mudau was working in the Cosmo City area in Gauteng between January and February 2022.