E-hailing services boost prices amid Ekurhuleni taxi shutdown

Ekurhuleni taxi shutdown. Picture: Screenshot

Ekurhuleni taxi shutdown. Picture: Screenshot

Published Mar 7, 2024


E-hailing taxi operators have taken the opportunity to make the most of the unplanned taxi strike affecting various taxi ranks across Ekurhuleni, much to the dismay of many users.

Since early today, an unannounced taxi shutdown in the area has seen scores of commuters left waiting around at taxi ranks in a number of areas, with not a single taxi in sight.

It is believed that areas such as Alberton, Daveyton, Tembisa, Ivory Park, Vosloorus, Germiston and Benoni have been affected by the strike.

The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) national spokesperson Mmatshikhidi Rebecca Phala confirmed that there were taxis operating in and around Tembisa, Germiston, Vosloorus, Katlehong and Benoni.

Phala said there was a business disagreement between the industry and a bus company over a particular route used, which had subsequently led to the arrests of patrol members.

She said an urgent meeting had been called, with the City of Ekurhuleni also roped in to assist with coming to a resolution.

The spokesperson further dispelled rumours that the strike was a result of taxi violence as purported on social media.

While stakeholders gather to find a way forward, commuters have, however, noticed a surge in ride prices for e-hailing and other alternative services, such as Bolt and Uber.

“Bolt and Uber need to stop this nonsense of upping their prices when there’s taxi strikes or rain. How the hell do you go from R31 to R90!?!” wrote X user Lawrence Sebeko.

User @tmba_l2thu added: “It’s charging me R210 for 9kms, little brother had a test today. I just called the school ain’t paying that much.”

Some users, however, expressed that they understood that services such as Bolt and Uber had to consider the risk they were taking by coming into a volatile area.

“It’s just the economics of things my guy and it’s not just about the demand but also the risk of taking trips when taxis are on strike. High risk high reward,” added @Sleni_Slombo.

The Star

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