Scores of commuters in Gauteng will be left stranded after taxis have threatened to down tools on Monday. Santaco is aggrieved over the loss of income, and fears banks will resume deducting debts from 1 July. Also, the National Taxi Alliance has allowed its members to increase taxi fares by not more than 40%.

Scores of taxi commuters will be left stranded on Monday as the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) in Gauteng embarks on a strike.

Santaco national spokesperson Thabiso Molelekwa said they were informed by their provincial structure about the strike on Monday.

Molelekwa said there were many reasons that forced their members in Gauteng to embark on a strike including losing money during the lockdown.

“The strike is definitely on. Gauteng has told us to expect a letter with their decision to embark on a strike. We understand the pressure on the ground especially in Gauteng. There is fear where banks expect payment from 1 July because the payment holiday is over.

“Gauteng has never had confidence in this process and felt that government was unjustly treating the industry. The situation was also compounded by continuous increasing impoundment of taxis during this period,” said Molelekwa.

He said they still believed the need to engage with government and put some alternative proposals on the table.

“We believe not all avenues have been exhausted. Our biggest setback was the announcement by Minister Fikile Mbalula over the relief payment after he had immediately engaged with us in a meeting.

“We thought he would afford us an opportunity to respond. We are going to meet him next week. The announcement has caught us in an awkward position and we are unable to deal with masses on the ground.

“We believe in engagements with Mbalula and we also don’t accept his offer. It is too little,” said Molelekwa.