PEOPLE STRANDED AS DRIVERS STRIKE

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PEOPLE STRANDED AS DRIVERS STRIKE

COMMUTERS were left stranded after an illegal strike by taxi drivers on Monday. Taxi drivers blocked Dr Belcher Road in Mangaung, complaining about an increase in Interstate Bus Line buses on their route.Cops were called as the drivers were blocking the road with stones and burning tyres.Greater Bloemfontein Taxi Association spokesman Malefetsane Mpotoane said their drivers staged an illegal protest from 5am.“Our members complained that the local bus service put more buses on their route. “I told them to address the matter with the taxi owners so they can bring the matter to the organisation and we would take it from there,” Mpotoane told Daily Sun.“Some have now been arrested for violence.”He said they would have a meeting with their committee and then meet Interstate officials about the number of buses. “I apologise to commuters for what has happened. We are trying to solve the problem,” he said.Nthabiseng Mokone, who works in the Bloemfontein CBD, said she had to call her boss to explain why she was late.“I didn’t know anything about this nonsense.” George Mokgothu, the bus line’s spokesman, said he didn’t know about the strike. “I confirm there were no extra buses allocated to that route and there has never been a formal complaint. “If there is a problem, the taxi industry knows where to complain.”Sergeant Ikobeng Hlubi said five men were arrested.“They are being charged with public violence. At this stage, the situation is under control,” he said.

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