Queenstown Uncedo Service Taxi Association (Qusta)
launched its R1,5m Diesel Plus filling station for taxis only at the inter-modal rank on Wednesday.
Plus Group CEO Enus Osman, who is based in Cape Town, said this was the first pilot project to be implemented and the second phase would be a shopping complex with 15 stores.
“We are looking at establishing more fuel stations at 63 branches in the Eastern Cape,” Osman said.
“We work on an incentive basis and always negotiate for the best price. Our diesel is only R12 a litre, 80c cheaper. Taxis will save R60 on a full tank.”
Petrol will be available from next month.
Osman said this was an opportunity for local taxis to get a group discount for fuel.
“Over the years taxis have always been excluded from a good price for fuel, although they have been doing a lot of social work in carrying people from one area to another.”
The CEO said the project began about three years ago when the group presented the concept to Uncedo Service Taxi Association, a project in which the two organisations would work together for everyone to benefit.
“The Plus Group aims to empower the community. The idea is to bring the people via taxis to the central area of the taxi hub. We will create business opportunities for every person who comes to us and says they would like to be part of this organisation,” he said.
National Uncedo Taxi Service Association president Ntsikelelo Gaehler said a meeting would be called to encourage all drivers to fill up at the fuel station next week. He said the fuel station did not belong to individuals, but to all taxi operators.
Qusta chair Sandi Mgobo said: “It is the first time the taxi industry has something this great to contribute positively to the business.
“We believe the filling station will assist us to give better service to our passengers.
“Today people from the community were able to get work. We have employed three petrol attendants and as time goes by we will employ more people.”
He urged taxi drivers to support the filling station so those who had received employment could keep their jobs.
“We have employed two people permanently to clean the rank. They receive R500 per week. We employed a security guard who receives R6,000 a month. This is not from the municipality but from Qusta’s treasury.
“This reflects that the time has come for our communities to benefit from the development activities of the inter-modal taxi rank.”