Minister Carlisle Congratulates Santaco on Elective Conference
Robin Carlisle, Minister of Transport and Public Works, attended and addressed the South African National Taxi Council’s (Santaco) elective conference on 4 June 2013 in Worcester.
Noting that the previous conference had been held four years ago against a background of division and violence, Minister Carlisle congratulated Santaco on the sustained unity that had been achieved in the Western Cape taxi industry since then.
“Today chairman Vernon Billet heads the only truly united taxi community in SA, representing some eight regions and over 10 000 minibus taxis.”
Minister Carlisle made it clear that the Province and the City deal only with Santaco Western Cape in matters related to the taxi industry and the future role of the taxi industry in public transport would be negotiated with Santaco, and not decided for them.
With respect to concerns regarding Integrated Rapid Transit (IRT), the Minister pledged to help the industry to help itself procure services of advisors who can help them negotiate with government structures as equals. “I would like to propose the same model that we have applied in the George Mobility Project. But you must choose your own service providers,” said Minister Carlisle.
Minister Carlisle called on the taxi industry to increasingly demonstrate leadership, not only in the management of their businesses, but increasingly in the public transport as well as the broader issues of creating a successful province.
“The taxi industry is the finest example in Africa of self-made men and women creating value, wealth and employment through hard work, entrepreneurship and personal opportunity – and not through subsidies and hand-outs. This is why the minibus taxi industry is now the third largest in the Western Cape and continues to grow.”
Minister Carlisle congratulated the newly elected executive committee but challenged them to deal with the issue of driver behaviour.
“We need to deal with the issue of driver behaviour head-on. They compromise safety, are a law unto themselves and cause chaos. That cannot be tolerated. They are bad ambassadors of your business,” added Minister Carlisle.