Masondo said he fully supported the SA National Taxi Association (Santaco), which on Sunday announced it would start operating at full capacity on Monday to make up for losses suffered by the industry during the lockdown.
Martin Dube, an Umhlanga taxi rank driver, said there was not much he could do about the situation because he was given instructions by his employer, the vehicle owner.
“They instructed us to take 70% capacity and we did that. When they say we must take 100% again, we will. The sad part is that the police will arrest us drivers even though the owners said we must take 100%," he said.
Transport minister Fikile Mbalula addressed a media briefing in Johannesburg on Monday. He said taxi owners were daring the law and challenging the authority of the state by disregarding regulations.
“We are going to war on things when we are not supposed to be going to war. There is no need to fight. I am not prepared to go to war over nothing.”
Mbalula said government understood the plight of taxi drivers.
“We are scratching our heads every day (trying to find a solution). The taxi industry is not formalised and it will be very difficult for the industry to enjoy all the things that other business get to enjoy.”
He said the taxi industry was the backbone of the nation, and that government was in the process of discussing the formalisation of the industry.
Metro police could not be reached for comment.