Fikile Mbalula condemns growing number of motorists defying lockdown

Roadblock activity has intensified as more motorists defy the Covid-19 lockdown.
Roadblock activity has intensified as more motorists defy the Covid-19 lockdown.
Image: Supplied

Transport minister Fikile Mbalula has condemned the increasing number of motorists and public transport vehicles ignoring transport regulations during the nationwide lockdown.

At the start of the second week of the lockdown, the number of cars stopped at roadblocks across the country nearly doubled, increasing from 17,559 on Monday to 29,738 on Wednesday.

During the same period, e-hailing providers that failed to adhere to passenger limits increased from 32 on Monday and peaked at 509 on Wednesday. Cars licensed to carry four passengers are only allowed to carry two people under the lockdown.

Minibus taxis that failed to adhere to the required 70% passenger limit increased from 18 on Monday to 509 on Wednesday.

Attempts by motorists to cross provincial boundaries despite a ban in interprovincial travel increased from 125 on Monday to 196 on Wednesday.

Earlier in the week Gauteng had the highest number of motorists attempting to cross provincial borders, at 108, but on Wednesday it was overtaken by Mpumalanga with 149 instances.

"This conduct demonstrated a worrying trend which must be roundly condemned by both government and civil society," said Mbalula.

"Those who undermine efforts to arrest the spread of this pandemic must face the full might of the law and equally face condemnation by society, as their behaviour places the lives of millions at risk."

Mbalula commended the efforts of traffic law enforcement officers across the country and said law enforcement will be intensified.

"Authorities will not hesitate to ensure that the full might of the law is brought to bear on those who continue to break it," he said.

"Industry bodies must play their part to rein in those who continue to demonstrate flagrant disregard of the law."

Public transport operating hours are as follows:

  • 4am-5am: Empty taxis are permitted to make their way to collect commuters.
  • 5am-10am: Taxis are permitted to ferry commuters at 70% licensed capacity
  • 10am-11am: Buffer; all outstanding commuters must be dropped off and taxis parked.
  • 3pm-4pm: Empty taxis are permitted to make their way to collect commuters.
  • 4pm-8pm: Taxis are permitted to ferry commuters at 70% licensed capacity.
  • 8pm-9pm: Buffer; all outstanding commuters must be dropped off and taxis parked.

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