The Prosperous Platinum City’s ruined taxi rank

More than 200 taxis use this Madibeng rank daily, but it has only one toilet

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The taxi rank has two shelters, built by the taxi owners. Photo: Chris Gilili

The municipality describes Madibeng in North West as “the Prosperous Platinum and Green Tourism City”. But the taxi rank in Hebron, Madibeng, used by hundreds of taxis daily, has only one toilet, and, like the two shelters, the toilet was installed by the taxi owners, not the municipality.

The rank, which was started in 1985, is full of potholes. The shelters can only accommodate four taxis. But according to the Hebron Taxi Association, 220 taxis use the rank daily.

“Even the toilet you see, we built it ourselves from our pockets about six years ago, after years of empty promises from Madibeng,” said taxi driver and rank manager Mpho Thobedi. “Our passengers are suffering here, you can come here when it rains.”

Taxis at the rank serve 14 communities, including Ostraal, Pretoria, Mabopane, Ga-Rankuwa, Soshanguve, Itireleng, Letlhabile and Kgabalatsane.

Pule Rathebe, who has been using the rank for more than 18 years and is the treasurer of the Hebron Taxi Association, said that the taxi owners had come together in 1991 to build the shelter.

“We need more shelters. And we need the surface fixed. It has potholes which harm our cars on a daily basis. Our customers suffer the most, especially in bad weather. For years the Madibeng municipality has promised to build us shelters. Every budget, we are told the rank is going to be funded, but nothing follows after that,” said Rathebe.

A vendor near the taxi rank said: “We are not able to work when it rains here because we don’t have any shelter. The rank is filthy and no one does the cleaning.”

Madibeng Local Municipality did not reply to GroundUp’s questions, sent last Thursday. Spokesperson Tumelo Tshabalala promised that a response would be available by Monday 9 May 2022. However he ignored WhatsApp messages and calls requesting the promised response.

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TOPICS:  Transport

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