Many hit hard by metro strike

Tebogo Monama

Tebogo Monama

Yesterday Matome Dzoye arrived early at the Roodepoort traffic department to write his learner's driving licence test.

He was greeted by locked gates because of the indefinite strike by Samwu which started on Monday.

Dzoye said: "This is terrible. Why did they not send us notification by SMS that we won't be able to write?"

However, JMPD spokesman Wayne Minnaar said: "We did not send them notification because we have done so through radio, television and other media."

Dzoye was one of many people who were turned away from the Roodepoort, Randburg and Langlaagte stations.

At Roodepoort, members of the public were told that the station would open today at 7.15am to make bookings for learners' and drivers' licences - and that tomorrow it would open for those who wanted to renew or collect their drivers' licences.

At Langlaagte, freelance photographers stood outside the gates and complained about the loss of business. One said: "We charge R30 for four photos. On a busy day, one photographer can make up to R200. If they say the strike is indefinite, how our we supposed to make money?"

Car dealerships are also struggling to register vehicles or get payments from banks because they do not have the documentation.

Feroza Bulbulia of Pro-West Car Sales in Newlands, Johannesburg, said: "All this is disgusting. The banks cannot pay us. We need documentation from the department - and if we do not get them, they won't pay us."

Driving schools are also affected. An FZL Drivers Club instructor said: "There is nothing we can do with those people who have booked for their driver's tests. The department will have to postpone them."