The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) has called off the Cape Town taxi strike with immediate effect, bringing to an end a week of devastation and violence.
Cape Town taxi strike ends: Here’s everything you must know
In a statement, the taxi association confirmed that following fruitful negotiations with the City of Cape Town, a consensus was reached between all parties involved and normal operations are set to be restored from Friday, 11 August 2023.
SANTACO revealed that, as part of the collective agreement reached with the Ministry of Transport and the City of Cape Town, “the next 14 days will be utilised to work towards the release of the vehicles that were wrongly impounded.”
“This is a significant step towards restoring trust and operations to their regular state,” the association noted.
The end of the taxi strike, for commuters, brings a wave of relief. However, a dark cloud hangs over the irreparable damage caused by forces associated with the taxi strike.
The most recent statistics indicate that the Cape Town taxi strike claimed at least five lives, including the brutal and senseless murders of Metro LEAP officer Zanikhaya Kwinana and British doctor Kar Hao Teoh, who, shortly after departing from the Cape Town airport in a car rental with his wife and son, on Thursday, 3 August 2023, took the wrong turn into Nyanga and was viciously gunned down.
“On behalf of SANTACO Western Cape, I convey our sincerest condolences to the families of those who tragically lost their lives during the Stay Away. We stand with you in this time of grief and offer our profound sympathies. We also extend our heartfelt sympathy to everyone who was negatively affected by the events of these past days,” the taxi association wrote.
While the City of Cape Town has yet to acknowledge SANTACO’s decision, earlier on Thursday, MEC for public safety JP Smith confirmed law enforcement officials were combing through 198 active criminal cases linked to the taxi strike.
“These include charges of murder, arson as well as malicious damage to property, assault and GBH,” Smith revealed.