Cape Town Mayor Welcomes High Court’s Rejection of Taxi Council’s Interdict Request

Cape Town Mayor Welcomes High Court’s Rejection of Taxi Council’s Interdict Request

Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis has expressed approval for the Western Cape High Court’s decision to reject The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO’s) interdict request.

This decision comes in the wake of a recent minibus-taxi strike and the subsequent negotiations between the City and SANTACO.

The Court’s rejection of the interdict request signifies a significant step forward in resolving the tensions between the taxi industry and the local government.

Formalization of Minibus-Taxi Strike Resolution Approved

In addition to rejecting SANTACO’s interdict request, the Western Cape High Court has also approved the City’s bid to formalize the terms of the minibus-taxi strike resolution.

This move has been welcomed by Mayor Hill-Lewis and is aimed at clarifying the agreement that ended the strike.

By formalizing the terms, the City aims to dispel any misinformation and prevent potential conflicts between taxi operators and law enforcement.

Impoundment of Vehicles Upheld for Commuter Safety

Mayor Hill-Lewis emphasized that the impoundment of vehicles will continue as per the National Land Transport Act, focusing on offenses that endanger commuter safety.

The Court’s affirmation of the legality of impounding vehicles for safety reasons is seen as a positive step toward maintaining road safety and preventing potential hazards caused by non-compliant vehicles.

Mayor Hill-Lewis reiterated the City’s commitment to ensuring passenger and commuter safety by strictly enforcing national law.

Collaborative Efforts for Commuter Safety

The Mayor also highlighted the collaborative efforts between the City and the minibus-taxi industry in ensuring commuter safety.

The recently formalized agreement, now a court order, outlines the responsibilities of both parties.

The Minibus-Taxi Task Team, which includes SANTACO, City representatives, and Western Cape Government officials, will work together to define offenses that warrant impoundment.

The team will also address the challenges between the taxi industry and the government, aiming to achieve their respective objectives while maintaining public safety.

Future Meetings and Continued Engagement

Looking ahead, the Minibus-Taxi Task Team is scheduled to convene on August 22, 2023.

Mayor Hill-Lewis expressed hope for SANTACO’s active participation in these discussions, underscoring the importance of collaborative efforts to ensure the mobility and safety of Cape Town’s residents.

The City recognizes the critical role of the minibus-taxi industry in the public transport network and aims to work in partnership with them to overcome the challenges that arise.

Key Points of the Formalized Agreement

The formalized agreement, now a court order, encompasses several key points:

1. Defining Offenses: Over the next 14 days, starting from August 14, 2023, the Minibus-Taxi Task Team, including SANTACO, City, and Western Cape Government representatives, will collaboratively define offenses that endanger commuter safety and warrant impoundment.

These definitions will guide enforcement actions according to the National Land Transport Act and Operating License Conditions.

2. Impoundment Criteria: Impoundments will continue for vehicles that are unlicensed, permit-less, or lack adequate roadworthiness.

3. Appeals Process: Mayor Hill-Lewis invited SANTACO to present cases of impounded vehicles for offenses unrelated to commuter safety.

If validated, the City will appeal to the Public Prosecutor for their release, aiming to align on what constitutes minor offenses.

4. Strike Protocols and Resolution: SANTACO commits to providing 36-hour notice before future strikes, with an escalation and resolution clause involving the Premier and Mayor before any strike action is taken.

In summary, the recent developments signify a step forward in establishing a collaborative approach between the City and the minibus-taxi industry to ensure both commuter safety and the smooth functioning of Cape Town’s transportation system.

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