Some Gauteng taxis to double fares next week - here's what you need to know
Taxi commuters under the Alexandra Taxi Association (ATA) and Alexandra, Randburg Midrand, Sandton Taxi Association (Armsta) will pay more than double in taxi fares as of Monday June 15.
Here's what you need to know:
The associations on Sunday said they would be increasing prices by more than 100% because of losses suffered during the national lockdown. Taxi capacity is currently capped at 70% to allow for social distancing between passengers.
According to SowetanLIVE, a single trip from Johannesburg to Alexandra township now costs R13 and will be R30 as of mid-June.
Ata secretary-general Gabriel Mataboge told SowetanLIVE the industry had lost a lot of money under levels 4 and 5 of the lockdown, as their working hours were restricted. He said some taxis were being repossessed as owners could longer afford to pay monthly the instalments.
Fikile Mbalula responds
Transport minister Fikile Mbalula on Sunday said the government was finalising its plan to fund the industry, and urged taxi owners to be mindful of the poor when adjusting prices.
He further warned that illegal profiteering was not allowed during the Covid-19 pandemic and he would consult the Competition Commission to assess if the increases are legal.
“We understand that there may be a need for fare increases but those increases must be fair, the industry must take into consideration the plight of the poor and the working class who form the majority of their customers. Anything outside that fairness is illegality,” said Mbalula in a statement.
Many taxi commuters have condemned the price hikes, with some saying they will walk to work as they will not be able to fork out for the new fares. Here are some of their responses:
Surely R30 for a taxi from Alexandra to Sandton is unprecedented I mean many of these workers didn't earn any money during this lockdown, where do they get this money?— Nkosana Hlongwane (@nsg_hlongwane) June 8, 2020
😂😂😂😂I also understand 🤞. We will jog to work, I can't pay R30 from Alexandra to Sandton, balfour etc. Angina Mali yokudlala— Lebogang wa SA🇿🇦🇿🇦🇿🇦 (@sa_lebogang) June 7, 2020