Agreement signed today to remove 940 minibus taxis owned by the ARMSTA and ATA associations authorizing Rea Vaya buses to operate
From Joburg CBD to Alexandra and Sandton Rea Vaya Phase 1C set for operation before June
By Jonk wa Mashamba
The MMC for Transport, Cllr Funzi Ngobeni has today presided over the signing of three key agreements which paved the way for the operation of Rea Vaya Phase 1C(a) – a route that will connect Phase 1A and 1B from the Johannesburg CBD to Alexandra, Greenstone and Sandton.
According to Olebogeng Molatlhwa, Deputy Director: Communications and Stakeholder Management, the agreements were entered into between the City’s transport department and our new partners, the Alexandra, Randburg, Midrand, Sandton Taxi Association (ARMSTA) as well as the Alexandra Taxi Association (ATA).
Molatlhwa said the signed agreements are significant in that they open the way for the formation of a new bus operating company that will oversee the day-to-day management and service operations of the assigned 141 low entry buses for the Rea Vaya Phase 1C (a) routes.
The agreements signed include Compensation for economic loss, Bus Operating Company formation and Participation Agreements.
According to these agreements, the ARMSTA and ATA associations will be compensated for removing their mini-bus taxis from operation and thereafter will agree to no longer operate any type of taxi-related services along the new route set to be used by the newly formed bus company.
The agreements allow the City to remove 940 minibus taxis from the Phase 1C(a) route. Depending on their age and condition, some vehicles will be scrapped while newer vehicles will be sold.
This will ultimately lead to the cancellation of all operating licenses attached to the affected taxis.
Ngobeni indicated that the City was transforming the taxi industry through section 41 of the National Land Transport Act 5 of 2009 which promotes economic empowerment while restructuring transport operators to discourage monopolies.
“Therefore, seeing the realisation of the owners of the affected minibus taxis becoming shareholders and manage Rea Vaya buses through a registered company,” said MMC for Transport, Cllr Funzi Ngobeni.
The soon-to-be-formed bus operating company will come into full effect once the Bus Operating Company Agreement has been entered into between the City and the affected Taxi Industry, following a public participation process that is currently underway.
The introduction of Rea Vaya Phase 1C (a) will provide a safe, affordable and reliable transport to the residents of Berea, Yeoville, Orange Groove, Cheldondale, Norwood, Balfour Park, Bramley, Wynberg, Alexandra, Marlboro, Athol, Sandton, Sandown, Longmeadow and Greenstone and the service is expected to start operating before the end of June 2022.