Social distancing will collapse taxi industry, warns NTA

Social distancing will collapse taxi industry, warns NTA

The National Taxi Alliance (NTA) says the industry cannot afford to limit the number of passengers travelling in taxis.

johannesburg taxi tank.PNG

This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa declaring coronavirus as a state of disaster. 


Measures to combat the virus include a prohibition on any gathering of 100 or more people and discouraging non-essential travel. 


Transport Minister Fikile Mbulala told the media on Monday that trains, taxis, and buses will be disinfected and random screening would be done at taxi ranks. 


Over 16 million South Africans use taxis on a daily basis. 

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NTA chairperson Francis Matsitsa says the virus poses a challenge for the industry. 


"In a 15 passenger combi we may have decided to reduce the number, that would mean that we will be providing transport for nothing, we won't get any income. How on earth are we going to survive? We owe these taxis, we are going to face a challenge in paying the installments that are due and the government is not saying anything to us." 


Matsitsa says they have just been told they will discuss the matter at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac). 


"Government had the opportunity since December to prepare for this, maybe they had hoped this will confine itself in China and not break out. We are saying after taking a cue from what the president said, we have scrambled things together because we understand the need for us to make a contribution."

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