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08 April 2020

Public transport operators urged to disinfects their taxis every after load

Adherence to lockdown regulations has become the order of the day for every government activity in order to fight the spread of COVID-19 in the entire country.

This has been attested by the recent activities of the North West Department of Community Safety and Transport Management following constant appeal by the government political leaders to the communities to adhere to all regulations in place to contain the spread of the deadly virus.

Having received the Personal Protective Equipment (hand gloves, masks and disinfects), from the National Department of Transport (NDoT), the Department kick started a drive of activities to distribute the material to all taxi ranks across the Province.

The activities were launched by the North West Premier Professor Tebogo Job Mokgoro when he visited the Rustenburg taxi rank which is the biggest in the Province.

The distribution of this material has been led by local and district mayors and MEC’s of different Departments supporting the MEC for Community Safety and Transport Management Sello Lehari.

Leading the distribution in the Potchefstroom taxi rank, the Public Works and Roads MEC Gaoage Oageng Molapisi encouraged people to stay at home during the lockdown and constantly to wash hands as required.

He said the fight against COVID-19 can only be winnable if people can work together with government and comply with regulations.

“If our people can just comply with the set lockdown regulations, we will see a reduced numbers of COVID-19 infections,” said Molapsi who demonstrated to the operators on how to disinfect their taxis.

Meanwhile, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development MEC, Desbo Mohono has encouraged communities to do testing and screening for COVID-19.

Speaking at the handing over of material at the Klerksdorp taxi rankShe outlined the importance of lockdown regulations, testing and screening.

In another simultinous activity at the Taung taxi rank, the Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality’s Executive Mayor Boitumelo Mahlangu expressed her gratitude to the Department’s efforts to assist public transport operators in ensuring compliance and further promoting hygiene at all taxi ranks.

She said the taxi industry plays a significant role in the economy of the more especially in the rural areas of the Country. “We are grateful that the Department has seen it fit that they prioritise the most important industry in the Province.

Taxi industry takes our people to work every day and in small communities like ours, it plays a vital role in the economy,” said Mahlangu.

Representing the taxi industry in two activities, Vryburg and Taung taxi ranks, the Chairperson of the Dr Ruth Seomotsi Mompati Regional Taxi Association Mr Ebusang Tladi said the industry is committed to comply with the lockdown regulations to curb the spread of COVID-19.

“We are greateful for the Department’s consignment. It is up to us to take these messages from government seriously and comply to the regulations and be responsible,” said Tladi.

He said taxi operators are at high risk as they bare at the frontline. “As taxi operators we are at high risk of this virus because we are at the frontline of community services as we ferry people on daily basis, however, we are committed to comply to all regulations to contain the spread of the virus,” Tladi concluded.

In culmination of all activities, the Head of Department (HoD), Ms Botlhale Mofokeng said CONVID-19 has proven to be nemesis that respected no gender, no colour, no religion nor social stratum. She said disinfectants, sanitizers and washing hands should become a new norm.

“COVID-19 is teaching us new culture which we have forgotten – basic hygiene. Let’s continue to comply and stay at home. Go out only when its completely necessary,” said Mofokeng, who further requested operators to use disinfects and sanitizers with respect.

“These are not for taxi drivers or their families. They are meant to contain the spread of the virus while you transport our essential services workers on daily basis.”

The HoD continued to plead with taxi operators to strictly observe operational times as announced by the Minister of Transport.

According to reviewed lockdown regulations on public transport, operators are strictly allowed to operate from 05H00 to 10H00 and 16H00 to 21H00. Furthermore, they should only load 70 percent of the vehicle capacity, a regulation which also applies to private vehicles of those who are allowed to travel in position of permits.

The operators are also requested to disinfect their taxis every after load before getting other commuters, while further requested to provide sanitizers to their commuters.

In total, the Department will handover more than 428 boxes of gloves comprising of 100 each, 8140 masks and concentrated disinfectant chemicals comprising 20 litres which will be over 300 000 litres when diluted.


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MEC Sello Lehari

HOD Ms Botlhale Mofokeng

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