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Zwane: Allowing taxis to load at 100% is a balancing act

On Sunday night, President Cyril Ramaphosa gave in to taxis operators' demand for them to transport commuters at full capacity but locally.

FILE:  Chairperson of the portfolio committee on transport in Parliament Mosebenzi Zwane. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Chairperson of the portfolio committee on transport in Parliament Mosebenzi Zwane said on Monday granting taxi drivers permission to load at a 100% capacity was a balancing act.

On Sunday night, President Cyril Ramaphosa gave in to taxis operators' demand for them to transport commuters at full capacity but locally.

However, when they cross the province drivers can only load at a 70% capacity.

As commuters are likely to be cramped up not considering any social distancing, Ramaphosa instructed drivers to ensure there is ventilation with an open window.

Zwane said the decision was based on a fine balance between the economy and safety.

“This issue has more to do with mitigating the losses in terms of the economy and also dealing with the issue of safety. You will remember that we find our situation of balancing the two.”

Meanwhile, the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) has welcomed Presidents Cyril Ramaphosa’ decision to allow drivers to load their vehicles to full capacity but said it wants further consultation on the conditions attached.

Santaco spokesperson Thabiso Molelekwa said: “We are quite concerned about putting in place rule that defeat the purpose of what we want to achieve and that is why we continue to engage robustly with the department on some of the indicating factors and how they may have a possible impact on the public.”

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