1 Dec 2017, Brackenfell, Cape Town: Authorities fear the eruption of a taxi war in Brackenfell following the application for a new taxi route into this suburb.
An attack allegedly linked to this highly controversial route occurred last Wednesday when a women attempting to board a taxi in Cecil Morgan Street was pulled out of the taxi and allegedly assaulted by rival taxi owners.
The proposed new route will connect the eastern areas of Khayelitsha and Nyanga with the Cape Gate region, sidestepping the Bellville connection – a move that will lead to chaos, according to role players.
The Transport and Urban Development Authority (TDA) received this application earlier this month and already it has resulted in taxis illegally ranking on the Protea Heights side of the Brackenfell train station, while the application is pending.
According to local councillors, the proposed route, coming from Khayelitsha, via Mfuleni, Blue Downs and Kuils River, down Bottelary Road into Cecil Morgan Street and down to the Brackenfell train station, is one that will cause severe friction between the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (CATA) and the Congress of Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta), two taxi factions in the City.
At a meeting on Wednesday, Siseko Mbandezi, a DA councillor in subcouncil 2, vehemently opposed this route, saying it is a “disaster waiting to happen”. According to him, CATA has been ranking on the other side of the station in Brackenfell for several years serving local routes.
Giving another faction legal ranking rights just on the other side of the railway bridge will lead to unprecedented taxi violence, he said.
“It will endanger the lives of the taxi drivers, passengers, train commuters, schoolchildren crossing the railway bridge in the mornings and afternoons, as well as the residents in the adjacent residential Protea Heights area,” he said.