A bus with passengers was hijacked in Pretoria on Tuesday afternoon after a feud between several taxi operators on the city’s express bus service.

Sheila Lynn Senkubuge, Mayor Committee on Roads and Transport, said on Wednesday that the A Re Yeng bus was allegedly hijacked by “double crossed ” bus drivers who disregarded an agreement between the Tshwane metro and three taxi ranks.

The company entered the agreement with the taxi associations of Hammanskraal, Stinkwater and Eersterust in December 2017. According to the company, taxi drivers are reimbursed to no longer enter the city center, but to pick up and drop off commuters at a newly built taxi and bus stop at the Wonderboom Junction shopping center at R17 per ride. From Wonderboom Junction, commuters will then be transported with A Re Yeng buses to the city center at R8 per ride.

This agreement was implemented on January 8.

“On Tuesday afternoon, taxi drivers from all three taxi associations refused to take passengers from the taxi stand back to Hammanskraal, Stinkwater and Eersterust. They have also asked R24 for a ride instead of R17 since 8 January, “she said.

The bus was hijacked during the protest action and later found in Stinkwater with all the passengers in it. The bus was escorted back to the taxi and bus stop with the help of the Tshwane metro police.

The incident meant that the bus service between the city center and north of the city had been delayed for about two hours.

It was not immediately clear whether someone was arrested because of the incident.

Senkubuge said the incident was unfortunate, and the metro has already urged a meeting with the associations to ensure that all their members respect the agreement.

“If they do not mind, the metro will take legal action to correct the situation to ensure commuters get the service they are entitled to,” Senkubuge added.


 

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