Soaratlhe chosen best taxi driver

NUMBER ONE: Richard Soaratlhe with his trophy. Pic. Siphiwe Malaza. 18/09/07. © Unknown.
NUMBER ONE: Richard Soaratlhe with his trophy. Pic. Siphiwe Malaza. 18/09/07. © Unknown.

Getrude Makhafola

Getrude Makhafola

Richard Soaratlhe's dedication and the love for his job finally paid off when he was chosen Gauteng's best taxi driver.

The 38-year-old Soaratlhe was voted number one driver at a lavish banquet in Johannesburg and walked away with R5000 prize money, a trophy and two certificates, one for advanced driving and the other for defensive driving.

The competition was a countrywide initiative by liquor company Brandhouse Beverages and the nine provincial community safety departments.

Soaratlhe and 14 regional finalists underwent a gruelling evaluation that included a theory test as well as advanced and defensive driving tests.

He will represent Gauteng in the national finals where the best driver will be chosen.

"I entered the competition with confidence. I have been driving for years and am familiar with all sorts of passenger vehicles," said an ecstatic Soaratlhe, who comes from Mathibestad, North West.

Soaratlhe operates on the Pretoria to Soshanguve route from Bloed Street taxi rank.

His working day begins at 4am when he leaves Mathibestad to Soshanguve, his starting point.

From this sprawling Tshwane township, Soaratlhe ferries workers, students and ordinary people to and from the city.

"The best part is when I have conversations with passengers. I am never lonely," he said.

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