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Intercape hails court ruling compelling ministers to protect long-distance buses

The bus company approached the court seeking intervention to compel the Eastern Cape Transport MEC and the transport minister to implement urgent measures to keep its drivers and passengers safe.

CAPE TOWN – Intercape has welcomed an order handed down by the High Court in Makhanda.

The judgment orders government to fulfil its obligations to maintain law and order in the long-distance bus sector.

The bus company approached the court seeking intervention to compel the Eastern Cape Transport MEC and the Transport Minister to implement urgent measures to keep its drivers and passengers safe.

In August, Intercape said that it recorded 150 attacks on its buses since the start of 2021, including shootings, intimidation, incidents of assault and extortion.

The attacks, allegedly carried out by taxi operators, are prevalent in the Western and Eastern Cape

Intercape said in vindication of its ongoing pleas for intervention, the High Court in Makhanda declared the Eastern Cape Transport MEC and the transport ministry failed to take positive steps to ensure measures are put in place to provide for the safety and security of long-distance bus drivers and passengers while they had an obligation to do so.

The order now requires practical measures to be implemented, including the formulation of an action plan with the South African Police Service, which must be delivered within a period of 20 days.

The court further ordered measures provided for in the National Land Transport Act be considered, including extraordinary measures like the closure of taxi routes and ranks and the suspension of operating licences or permits.

Intercape CEO Johann Ferreira said that this victory was an important step in holding the responsible ministers and other office bearers to account and to prevent the gross dereliction of their duties.

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