23 July 2021

Siyabuya urges taxi peace to enable vaccinations

Submitted by Archy Hlahla
Siyabuya urges taxi peace to enable vaccinations

Cape Town taxi wars are preventing vaccinations against the Covid-19 virus just as infections are rising in the Western Cape.

“We need peace because we need people to get their jabs,” said Siyabuya! leader Melene Rossouw.

“The fact that talks, including with government, have failed once again to produce agreement is devastating. It’s going to affect thousands of people in Cape Town who still cannot get to vaccination sites. This is tragic, particularly for older people who are most vulnerable to the virus.

“I know of people who cannot move from their homes because all forms of transport have come to a halt as a result of the taxi violence. This is directly affecting jobs and livelihoods, as well as vaccinations which are critical to both.

 “Taxi drivers were heroes in the recent unrest in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, helping to protect shops from looters. But in Cape Town they are killing each other over routes and harming the city’s economy by stopping people getting to work, shops and vaccination sites.

“Cape Town needs a rethink. Please people – lives are at stake and the virus is spreading. Without taxi peace, Cape Town cannot fight this virus,” she said.

Siyabuya is a voluntary movement formed to link people and groups who believe South Africa can emerge stronger from the coronavirus pandemic. It promotes moves to keep safe, feed others and get vaccinated as soon as people are eligible.

“Siyabuya believes that, by working together, we can #MakeSAbetter. We need taxi peace if that is going to happen in Cape Town,” Melene said.

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About Melene Rossouw

Melene Rossouw is the external leader of Siyabuya. She is an internationally recognised gender and human rights activist, global award winner, public speaker, moderator, facilitator, strategist and consultant. An attorney with 13 years’ experience, Melene is founder of the Women Lead Movement in South Africa.

Her accolades include being selected by the prestigious Obama Foundation as an Obama Leader in Africa (2018) and as a Mandela Washington Fellow by the US Department of State in 2019. In October 2020, she was selected as one of the 100 Most Influential Young Africans and made the Top Ten list of Most Influential Young Africans by Africa Youth Awards. She was also recently named as one of the 100 Most Influential South Africans. 

About Siyabuya

Siyabuya believes South Africa can emerge stronger from the Covid-19 pandemic. It aims to build networks across the country of people who share this belief and are working to achieve it. Those who are helping others, creating jobs and feeding the poor, are setting examples others can emulate.

Siyabuya! aims to #MakeSAbetter by instilling a common sense of mission, built from the ground up, through ordinary South Africans engaged in active citizenry to improve their fortunes and the lives of those around them.

For more information, visit our website at www.siyabuya.org.za