Metro police will not be bullied into condoning lawlessness

Metro police have released a statement following the one-day strike staged by an Alexandra-based taxi association aimed at countering the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department’s (JMPD) effort to enforce the rule of law in the City of Johannesburg.

In their statement, they make it clear that they will not be intimidated nor will they back down.

Read: #TaxiStrike: 5 things you may have not known about SA’s minibus taxi industry

Public Safety MMC Michael Sun said, “We will not surrender to lawlessness. Illegal, non-compliant and irresponsible operators cannot expect us to look away whilst they play with the lives of commuters and other motorists on the road. We will certainly not be bullied into submission by individuals who promote lawless conduct and behaviour. We invite the operators affected to engage with us in a mature and professional manner, and it is in the interest of everyone that we find a sustainable solution.”

The strike has left hundreds of commuters stranded and Sun said they have received a report that a driver of a bakkie was intimidated for giving stranded commuters a lift in Killarney.

Read: Five ways to get to work during the #TaxiStrike

Through Operation Buya Mthetho, Metro police have been removing un-roadworthy, unlicensed and illegal vehicles from the roads across the city since the beginning of the year.

It is also crucial to note that legal compliances by motorists and their vehicles in line with legislation such as the National Road Traffic Act are compulsory and enforcement is not selective but applies across the board.

One part of this multi-focused operation is to ensure road safety and to restore law and order.

Over 500 un-roadworthy, unlicensed and illegal mini-bus taxis, and over 60 illegal dumper trucks have been impounded by Metro police since the commencement of Operation Buya Mthetho.

Read: JUST IN: Alex taxi operators attack journalist

JMPD is on high alert and has been deployed to the identified hotspots, where they will ensure the safety of residents and that law and order are maintained.

Metro police will continue with law enforcement and to impound vehicles that are deemed illegal and/or unsafe.

“We want to see lawful and responsible public transport operators flourish in their businesses and urge all commuters, transport business owners and motorists to co-operate with each other to ensure safer roads for all of us,” Sun concluded.

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