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Santaco taxi shutdown: Gauteng commuters left stranded and frustrated

The South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) rejected government’s R1.1 billion relief fund, saying its members needed more money.

Noord Taxi Rank in Johannesburg was empty on Monday morning, 22 June 2020 as taxi drivers affiliated to Santaco went on strike. Picture: @Bulelwa04464329/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - Only a few taxis were transporting commuters in the Johannesburg CBD on Monday morning.

As part of a mass shut down in Gauteng, thousands of taxis pulled up their handbrakes this morning, leaving commuters stranded across the province.

The South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) rejected government’s R1.1 billion relief fund, saying its members needed more money.

Commuters were battling to get to work and school, with taxi drivers refusing to ferry them.

Earlier, there were long queues at the Noord Taxi Rank, but many commuters left after it became clear that no taxis were coming to collect them.

Some commuters asked for lifts from passing cars, while others forked out for taxi cabs.

“I’ve been stuck here since 7am and it’s been really frustrating,” said one commuter.

Another said: “I’m late for work and I have been here for over an hour.”

The Gandhi Square Bus Terminal was busy in the morning. Buses picked up the slack by ferrying people who would normally use a taxi.

Only a handful of minibus taxis could be seen in downtown Joburg and it is still unclear what the picture will look like in the afternoon when commuters leave work.

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