Gauteng Traffic Police have condemned acts of intimidation and obstruction of roads by taxi operators after protest action on Wednesday morning due to outstanding Covid-19 relief fund payments for their industry.
Taxi operators blocked roads and left many workers stranded as they could not go to work, while passengers were seen kicked and forced out of the buses.
The aim of the march was to hand over a memorandum of grievances to Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula and President Cyril Ramaphosa, with taxi operators claiming to not receiving any of the more than R1 billion in Covid-19 relief funds promised in June.
“The Gauteng Traffic Police would like to issue a stern warning against taxi operators who are causing unnecessary obstruction on our roads,” Gauteng Traffic Police spokesperson Sello Maremane said in a statement.
Maremane said traffic police would not “hesitate to act against any form of lawlessness”.
“While we recognise that picketing is a constitutional right of every citizen, obstruction on a public road constitutes a traffic offence and is therefore punishable by law. The Gauteng Traffic Police and various law enforcement agencies will not hesitate to act against any form of lawlessness on our roads.
“The strike has a negative impact on our economy since Gauteng is the economic hub of our country. Taxi operators have avenues they can explore to raise their concerns instead of resorting to intimidation and blockage of roads,” he added.
READ MORE: Matrics affected by taxi strikes can write at any school, arrive late – Lesufi
Maremane further urged motorists to drive with caution as some roads had been affected as a result of protest action.
- R80 Mabopane Freeway, from Transfer Taxi Rank three-way crossing.
- R573 Moloto Road, Cullinan Crossing.
- Soweto Highway, north bound.
- N1 between Buccleuch interchange and Samrand offramp, north bound.
- R21 between Olifantsfontein and Irene offramp, north bound.
- N1 Sefako Makgatho offramp, north bound.
“The Gauteng Traffic Police Public Transport Intervention Unit is monitoring the situation closely in order to deal decisively with any form of intimidation and lawlessness on Gauteng roads.”
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