FOLLOWING AN impasse on the ongoing taxi strike in Soweto, the MEC for Transport in Gauteng Ismail Vadi, has unfortunately taken a step to shut down troubled taxi ranks.
On Thursday, the warring associations Witwatersrand African Taxi Owners Association and Nancefield Dube West Taxi Association, remained at loggerheads on the routes to be used.
As a result the MEC decided to take a punitive measure to avoid any further casualties, following the injury of six passengers who were caught in the fire this week.
“There will be a fair amount of public transport services available to the residents of Soweto and the immediate vicinity of the taxi ranks. There will be a degree of inconvenience and our feeling is that residents should try and make alternative arrangements, it’s absolutely important to do so,” he said.
The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) has welcomed the closure of six taxi ranks in Soweto operated by two warring taxi associations, but at the same time is worried by the impact it will have on the economy.
National Taxi Alliance has reiterated it will operate on Friday despite the MEC’s decision.
Six routes and two major taxi ranks have been closed for six months due to ongoing violence.
Here are the ranks and routes which will be closed:
- Makhetha Stores – Central Western Jabavu: John Page Drive and Main Street Jeppe Station Taxi Ranks. From Mphuthi and Limakatso streets continue towards Elias Motsoaledi into Machaba Drive, turn right into Nxumalo Street to Dube Station taxi rank, turn into Ncube Drive, turn left into Mahalefela Road, proceed to Pela Street which then becomes Khumalo Street;
- Mofolo Sizwe Stores taxi rank: John Page Drive and Main Street, Jeppe Station Taxi Rank From Mphuthi Street (c/o Mphuthi Street and Banda St), continue Machaba Drive, continue Mwasi Street, turn right Mzilikatse Street, turn left Mncube drive, turn right Mtipa Street, continue Sobuza Street, turn Right Butshingi Street, turn left Mtipa Street, turn right Kumalo main road, continue Sofasonke Street, turn left Mooki Street, turn right Soweto Highway, continue Pat Mbatha Bus and Taxi Way, continue Pat Mbatha Bus Way, continue Busway, continue Bezuidenhout Street, turn right Market Street, continue Interchange, continue Commissioner Street, turn right John Page Drive, end (c/o John Page Drive and Main Street);
- Kwa-Mthetwa Stores (Machaba and Nxumalo Streets) – Mofolo: John Page Drive and Main Street, Jeppe Station Taxi Rank From Mthetwa Stores (corner of Machaba Drive and Nxumalo Street) turn left into Nxumalo Street, proceed to Dube Station Rank and turn right into Ncube Drive, turn left into Mahalefela Road, proceed to Pela main Road, then Pela becomes Khumalo Street proceed over Klip Valley Road to Sofasonke Street;
- Dube Station Taxi Rank: John Page Drive and Main Street, Jeppe Station Taxi Rank Street From Dube Station Taxi Rank (Leselinyane Street and Ncube Drive) proceed to Mahalefela Road, turn left into Mahalefela Road, proceed to Pela Main Road, then it becomes Khumalo Street, proceed over Klip Valley Road to Sofasonke Street; Makhetha Garage (Pela and Mahalefela Road) John Page Drive and Main Street, Jeppe Station Taxi Rank From Makhetha Garage (Pela Main Road) proceed to Khumalo Road and proceed over Klip Valley Road to Sofasonke Street; and
- Uncle Tom’s Hall (Orlando West): John Page Drive and Main Street, Jeppe Station Taxi Rank From Uncle Tom’s Hall in Khumalo Street proceed over Klip Valley Road to Sofasonke Street.
Image( A taxi window was smashed during taxi wars in Soweto this week).