Taxi owner cries foul over recap

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

A Mpumalanga taxi owner who heeded the government's call to bring his skorokoro minibus taxi to be scrapped for a fee has accused the transport department of making his life a misery.

Nicolas Magagula of Ermelo was one of thousands of taximen who took part in the government's taxi recapitalisation programme that is aimed at making the country's roads safer by replacing ageing taxis with new, more reliable vehicles.

Magagula told Sowetan that he took his minibus taxi for scrapping in White River in April last year after being told that he qualified for the once-off allowance of R50000.

His unroadworthy taxi was registered. The scrapping allowance is rolled out over seven years to ensure affordability to the national fiscus.

Magagula said officials had told him he would be paid within one month but this has not happened.

"I went back to White River to complain about the matter and they said there was outstanding information," said Magagula.

"After providing the information required I expected to get the money in a few days, but it is almost a year now and my family is starving because my minibus was all I had."

A spokesman for the department of roads and transport, Vukani Mnyandu, said the department was investigating the case.

More than 320 taxis have been scrapped in Mpumalanga so far.