Mbalula meets with new Santaco leadership to address rising fuel prices

There have been calls for government to intervene with many South Africans feeling the squeeze of the soaring fuel prices and the increasing cost of goods and services.

FILE: Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Fikile Mbalula/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula on Thursday afternoon met with the newly elected Santaco, leadership where the rising price of fuel and other pressures facing the industry were top of the agenda.

There have been calls for government to intervene with many South Africans feeling the squeeze of the soaring fuel prices and the increasing cost of goods and services.

Since the beginning of this month, taxi commuters have been forced to fork out anything between R2 to R5 more for their trips.

Operators say they were not immune to the rising cost of living and had to implement the fare hikes to sustain their businesses.

Thamsanqa Tomose is a student in Mabopane near Pretoria where fare hikes are set to kick in on Friday.

He said: “In a week on transport, I spend almost R250 on transport alone. We are facing too many challenges in the community, there are too many expenses.”

Meanwhile, amid pockets of blockades in Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal by truckers participating in the so-called national shutdown, Santaco resisted calls to join the demonstrations in June.

It said it was open to dialogue with government and other industry players.