Hundreds of drivers gathered in Marabastaad Pretoria, to protest against the exploitation of e – hailing prices they face from mobile app operators.
This is due to an agreement reached in previous meetings between March 2021 and June 2021 which stated that the concerns of e hailing operators and their drivers would soon be resolved.
Gauteng Transport MEC Jacob Mamabolo addressed Bolt, Uber, and Didi drivers urging them to call off the strike which is said to have been planned from the beginning of the week until Thursday.
Despite tensions, there has been a dramatic spike in prices which has seen drivers who have chosen not to strike, making a killing in profits.
E-hailing drivers are taking to the streets of Pretoria this morning. They say they've had it with app partners exploiting them. @pule_jones is in Pretoria tracking this story for us. #DStv403 pic.twitter.com/dDuvZQ4Zwg
— eNCA (@eNCA) March 22, 2022
However, this did not sit well with commuters as many have taken to social media to express their shock and grievances.
In response to the letter written by Transport MEC, Vhutungwa Mbelengwa – National spokesperson for e-hailing drivers under the banner of Unity in Action stated that Mamabolo’s mediation has bared no fruit. He also stated that they were looking for a non-violent resolution and ways of resolving the violence in the taxi industry.
Mbelengwa said that it was the drivers’ constitutional right to strike and that they would continue to do so.
“The MEC has failed to understand that we seek a healthy ecosystem within public transportation in order for the eradication of violence, regulation will ensure clearly defines and responsibilities all participants should adhere to.”
Bolt and Uber made an announcement threatening price increments which Bolt has since implemented.
A trip to work that usually costs me about R46. New fair prices due to the #eHailing drivers strike…#Uber #bolt #Didi #UberEats The demand has increased. Strike likely to last the entire week if no agreement is reached. pic.twitter.com/OTfzBNmFXy
— Pule Letshwiti-Jones (@pule_jones) March 22, 2022
— The DRIVER (@TheDRIVER_sa) March 22, 2022
E- hailing drivers on strike, it costs me R50 to get to my house from work and it's three times more pic.twitter.com/hbAYDgczWG
— Gerald🌍 (@amGeraldkatumba) March 22, 2022
The acting Coordinator of the strike in Tshwane known as ‘Dese’ said that the strike would continue despite this, which it has.
“It’s not only about the price increment, there’s a lot that needs to be addressed, including fake profiles that illegitimate drivers use to commit a crime and paint a negative light”, Dese said.