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Taxi industry making the right change

South African National Taxi Council

South African National Taxi Council

Pretoria -Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele says the taxi industry has made great strides in transforming its image as an industry associated with brutal violence.

“The taxi industry has taken great strides transforming its image as an industry associated with the violent resolution of its disputes, to one today which has resolved to banish violence to the dustbin of history,” he said.

Ndebele was speaking at the 10th anniversary of the South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) in Durban on Monday.

He said the past 10 years have seen the organisation go through various stages that tested its resolve to building a people-centred, united and prosperous industry.

“Some of the challenges included bringing together a fragmented industry torn apart by years of endless conflict and negative perceptions held by society at large.

“Today SANTACO celebrates the 10th anniversary of its existence as an operator organisation driving the public transportation of our people,” he said.

SANTACO remains the official representative of the taxi industry and carries a mandate to sustain engagement with government and other stakeholders on all matters affecting the taxi Industry.

The taxi industry commands a turnover of over R35 billion annually and further employs over 250 000 employees who are mainly lower and semi-skilled workers, consequently contributing immensely to government’s poverty alleviation programme.

In addition, the taxi industry serves ancillary economic activities such as hawkers and other informal retailers, who rely on taxis for their livelihood.

The number of taxis operating on South African roads is 283 159, excluding the informal taxis awaiting permits.

SANTACO last week unveiled its low-cost flight, SANTACO Airline, to taxi commuters. It offers flights between Lanseria, Bhisho in the Eastern Cape and Cape Town.

Ndebele believes the launch of SANTACO Airline is the culmination of a grand idea which started many years ago and serves as undisputable testimony to SANTACO’s visionary leadership.

“This vision has now given birth to the launch of SANTACO Airline operations, a bold move that has left many grinning with envy and others refusing to believe that indeed leaders and members of a taxi organization could hatch such an ambitious plan.” – BuaNews

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