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Don't close down taxi rank

By unknown | Mar 10, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Emotional decisions seldom lead to long-lasting solutions.

Instead they fuel already volatile situations by compounding problems.

In their concern and eagerness, both the Gauteng transport portfolio committee and the police have vowed to crack the case of Nwabisa Ngcukana, who was sexually assaulted because she wore a miniskirt at the Noord Street taxi rank in Johannesburg .

Closing down the rank, a threat issued by the committee last week, seems unreasonable and too harsh a decision. This because such a decision will have the unintended consequence of hurting the wrong party - commuters who might become victims of the resultant chaos.

Shutting the rank, which caters for so many taxi associations throughout the country, is therefore not a solution.

And just as problematic is the committee's decision to demand that taxi bosses to submit the names of drivers and queue marshalls who were on duty that day. At best, such a decision is impractical

The authorities should rather focus on their own bungle concerning CCTV cameras that did not capture the incident. It is inconceivable that one of the city's busiest centres was never prioritised for CCTV installation.

The authorities must be careful not to alienate taxi bosses, who condemned the incident from the outset and had agreed to help the police identify the culprits. Why should it now be their duty to trace the suspects and hand them over to the police?


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