Taxi Owners to Get R124 000 for Scrapped Taxi
Under the new Revised Taxi Recapitalisation Programme (RTRP) a minibus taxi owner will receive R124 000.00 instead of the previous R91 100.00. This was one of the changes announced by the Minister of Transport, Dr Blade Nzimande.
Nzimande said in Pretoria that government is intervening in the sector to transform it in the interest of passengers and operators. Apart from the increase in the scrapping allowance, Nzimande also announced the appointment of Anthus Services 84 as the Technical Partner responsible for the administration and management of the RTRP.
He also mentioned that government intends to persuade operators to move from individual ownership to cooperatives and corporations to deal with taxi violence. “By and large, the individual ownership model and taxi association route management model are at the heart of the endemic conflict and violence which have bedevilled the taxi industry for decades,” the Minister stated.
The taxi industry is the largest public transport mode, which is estimated to transport approximately 15 million commuters per day, which is 68% of all commuters. Government’s previous target of the Taxi Recapitalisation Programme was to scrap 100 000 old taxi vehicles and was later adjusted to 135 894 in 2007. Only 72 653 old taxis have been scrapped and a total amount of R4,4 billion was paid in scrapping allowances by the end of September 2018.
Nzimande pointed out that in addition to scrapping the balance of the 135 894 old taxis, the intention is to enable operators to participate in the value chain of the minibus taxi industry. Operators should set up enterprises to provide services like the supply of new taxi vehicles, finance, short-term insurance, spare parts, repairs, fuel, lubricants, electronic fare collection and property management. He said that by introducing economies of scale, the benefits of collaborative taxi industry ownership and operating models will include the provision of decent and secure employment to the taxi drivers and rank marshals with benefits such as living salaries, housing allowance, medical aid, hospital cover, pension fund, retirement fund and funeral cover.
Apparently 2353 illegally converted Toyota Quantum Panel Vans were identified by the Department of Transport as being illegally converted, while only 436 were retrofitted. According to the department, 1917 illegally converted Toyota Panel Vans will have to be scrapped and the owners will receive an allowance.