NATION

Taxi Owners Advised To Revise Contracts

For some taxi bases in Savusavu, some drivers are contracted to pay between $250 to $300, says Savusavu Taxi Association president Mohammed Farukh.
01 Apr 2020 12:12
Taxi Owners Advised To Revise Contracts
Taxi base near Savusavu Market in Cakaudrove on March 31, 2020. Photo: Shratika Naidu

 

The Fiji Taxi Association has advised taxi operators to revise their contracts with their taxi drivers in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

For some taxi bases in Savusavu, some drivers are contracted to pay between $250 to $300, says Savusavu Taxi Association president Mohammed Farukh.

“There are about 105 taxi drivers in Savusavu operating from ten different bases,” Mr Farukh said.

“Now with global crisis we earn about $15 to $25 a day which is not enough.

“With low income how we can pay the owner, refuel and cater for family needs and expenses?”

Fiji Taxi Association general secretary Ashwin Lal has advised taxi owners to be lenient with their drivers, given the travel restrictions and curfew put in place to control the pandemic.

One solution

Mr Lal said the owners and the drivers need to sit down to discuss and come up with a solution that would benefit both of them.

“What we have done after discussion with the Attorney-General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum we have decided to allow drivers to drive during curfew,” Mr Lal said.

“Some drivers hold contracts for some companies doing shift work after 10pm.

“We have asked them to get a company letter and carry an ID card and present it at the checkpoints.

“Also in case of emergency if a passenger wants to visit the hospital, the driver can inform the Police at the checkpoint.

“If any driver found giving false information to the Police or breached any curfew conditions, he would be arrested and charged,” he said.

Showing leniency

Taxi operator, Marimuttu, owns two taxis. He has set an example for taxi operators.

Mr Marimuttu said he understood the plight of the taxi drivers and told them that for the first two weeks they can provide for their families and the other two weeks they would have to pay their dues.

Mr Marimuttu is the owner of Marimuttu and Sons Pte Limited, a longtime Savusavu business which operates a service station and dairy shops.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

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