Transport Minister, Fikile Mbalula, says scholar transport is also allowed to carry 100% of its licensed passenger capacity for trips that are shorter than 200 kilometres.

Mbalula was addressing the nation on the regulations pertaining to the risk-adjusted strategy announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Mbalula says while taxis are now authorised to carry 100% loads over short distances, they must ensure that windows are kept open at all times and that jammers must be fitted in vehicles to keep windows open.

Commuter rail services are allowed to operate at 70% of their licensed capacity.

Mbalula says the metrorail system is non-operational and government is lagging behind in improving the service.

Millions of commuters rely on metrorail services, which were only recently reintroduced after being shut down in March.

“Our rail system is totally shattered. We are four years behind in terms of our modernisation program and our interventions tell the story. We want to change that setup to get metrorail in the republic to ferry more than 20 million people as it does, safe faster and cheaper and we are going to get there as we implement these plans.”

Mbalula also announced that it has negotiated payment holidays and other financial relief for struggling taxi owners with banks.

The taxi industry was severely impacted during Level 4 and 5 of the lockdown because of restrictions on their loading capacity and hours of operations.

“Individual banks have their own procedures and measures in place and will make their appropriate pronouncements in this regard. Various banks have offered payment holidays and re-determination of the terms of agreement with individual borrowers. The banks will also in due course communicate their decisions to the borrowers and the public in this regard on their COVID-19 related relief measures.”

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Private vehicles can now load to full capacity, in line with 100% capacity granted to taxis.

Mbalula reiterated that everyone must cover their nose and mouths when they are out in public.

Transport Director-general Alec Moeni says drivers and passengers in private vehicles should also ware masks.

“In as far as the issue of maximum number of passengers in a private vehicle – this together now with the revision the ministerial directions that will be gazetted later tonight – indeed we’ll prescribe this matter and this matter now will allow for full capacity of a vehicle, obviously with all precautions. Obviously, it’s now compulsory for everybody leaving their houses to wear masks.”