Taxi bosses gather in court ahead of ruling

Friday, August 28, 2009

Pretoria - Scores of taxi bosses have gathered at the North Gauteng High Court ahead of the ruling on the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) later this afternoon.

The court is expected to rule whether the City of Johannesburg is to go ahead with the launch of the BRT system this weekend.

The United Taxi Association Forum (UTAF) on Thursday lodged legal papers to have the launch of the BRT suspended. The forum wants the court to suspend BRT operations until further talks had taken place between the industry and government.

However, it's understood that a strike scheduled for next Tuesday by taxi operators opposed to the implementation of the BRT could be averted.

This comes after operators met with Gauteng government officials in Johannesburg on Thursday night. But South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) Secretary General Philip Taaibosch said the body will make an announcement regarding the strike after the court ruling.

"We will be briefing the media on our position on this matter after the court case until then we cannot say anything," Mr Taaibosch said.

But, on Thursday Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane made it clear that the launch of the system will go ahead as planned.

She vowed to deal harshly with any threats of violent protest by the taxi operators. The premier also indicated that government will be challenging the United Taxi Association Forum's court bid to stop the launch of the BRT.

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