'This time we want them to see how serious we are' - striking Uber and Taxify drivers

Image: 123RF/ Piotr Adamowicz

Ride hailing services customers were left stranded after striking Uber and Taxify drivers interrupted them on their scheduled trips with drivers who had refused to strike. 

Several drivers that were working across key Johannesburg areas such as Rosebank and Park Station were identified by groups of striking members who confiscated their phones and ordered them to join the masses in handing over a second memorandum to Uber and Taxify management.                                                                                           

"There needs to be solidarity between all drivers. If there is no solidarity then what we're aiming to achieve will fail," said Steven Chulu the Deputy Vice Chairperson of IHASA.      

The strike came after drivers alleged that uber and taxify management did not respond to the memorandum they handed over earlier on June 18th.

The second memorandum that was drafted entailed set demands for base fare prices to increase to R40 and R12.50 per kilometre for both companies and to reduce its 25% take home to 15%. They also requested for Uber and Taxify drivers to be represented on the board of directors.

“It is unfortunate that they did not engage with us about the first memorandum. This time we want them to see how serious we are,” Chulu said.

The drivers also said that they want the two companies to stop the introduction of new drivers because the market had become saturated.

A driver who did not want to be named said that he has worked for Taxify over the past two years, and is worried that the continuing fuel increases will affect his average income of R20 000.

“My car is paid off but I have to pay for fuel from this income, insurance, my car payment and feed my family. It is not enough,” he said.

He added that the continuing increase in fuel prices is set to make his financial situation worse.

“I think that the requests we have made are fare and in line with the current fuel costs that we are experiencing,” he said.

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