Picture: SOWETAN
Picture: SOWETAN

The City of Johannesburg says its Metro Police Department (JMPD) will continue to impound vehicles found to be illegal or unsafe.

"We want to see lawful and responsible public transport operators flourish in their businesses and urge all commuters‚ transport business owners and motorists to co-operate with each other to ensure safer roads for all of us‚" the City of Johannesburg said in a statement.

"The JMPD will continue with law enforcement and to impound vehicles that are deemed illegal and/or unsafe."

The statement came as the Alexandra Taxi association embarked on a strike on Monday after more than 500 minibus taxis were impounded by the JMPD at the weekend.

The strike affected areas including Midrand‚ Sandton‚ Woodmead and Alexandra.

"It is with regret that we note the one-day strike staged by an Alexandra-based taxi association aimed at countering the JMPD’s effort to enforce the rule of law of our city‚" the city said.

"It is also crucial to note that legal compliances by motorists and their vehicles in line with legislation such as the National Road Traffic Act are compulsory and enforcement is not selective‚ but applies across the board."

The city said the JMPD was on high alert and officers had been deployed to the identified hotspots.

Member of the mayoral committee for public safety Michael Sun said: "We will not surrender to lawlessness. Illegal‚ noncompliant and irresponsible operators cannot expect us to look away while they play with the lives of commuters and other motorists on the road.

"We will certainly not be bullied into submission by individuals who promote lawless conduct and behaviour. We invite the operators affected to engage with us in a mature and professional manner‚ and it is in the interest of everyone that we find a sustainable solution".