News Taxi drivers strike over COVID-19 relief fund

Taxi drivers strike over COVID-19 relief fund

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Taxi commuters will have to make alternative transport arrangements as the industry embarks on a nationwide strike on Wednesday, 18 November 2020.

 The National Taxi Alliance (NTA) is leading a march to Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula’s office and the Presidency in Tshwane at the Union Buildings. They will be issuing a memorandum of demands, which include fast-tracking the payout of the COVID-19 relief fund.

The industry is still recovering from the economic burden spurred by the lockdown. Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula announced earlier this year that R1.8 billion had been availed for the industry, to help it navigate the global pandemic

The NTA has accused government of not seeing to their demands as an industry.

 “The reason for this in summary is that we have been deprived a freedom of association which is enshrined in chapter two section 18 of our Constitution as South Africans and secondly, the president and the minister had promised the taxi industry a relief fund of R1.135 billion and that money seems to be not coming forth,” said Theo Malele.

“It will not be a strike that ends tomorrow. We have instructed our lawyers to file papers. We will be taking the department to the High Court and should all fail at the High Court we indent on appealing and we also are prepared to take it up to the Constitutional Court,” he further said.

The drivers are set to park their vehicles at the Tshwane Bus Depot at 09:00, before they march on foot to the respective places (Union Buildings and Transport Department offices)

Parents urged to make alternative transport arrangements

As school pupils continue writing the National Senior Certificate Examinations (NSC), the Gauteng education department expressed concern over the possible disruptions the strike may have.

The department has called on parents to make alternative transport arrangements for their children.

“Indeed, it is unfortunate that we will experience such an inconvenience during this critical time of examination,” spokesperson Steve Mabona said in a statement.

“Parents are encouraged to assist and make alternative transport arrangements especially for Matric candidates. All our Chief Invigilators are empowered to manage such situations including facilitation of necessary concessions. Candidates must ensure that they reach their exam centres,” he further said.

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