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Social Justice | ECESR Challenged Interior Ministry’s Failure to Renew White Taxi Licenses

Traffic Act does not require a bank letter as a pre-condition for license

This is the ECESR’s second challenge about white taxi problems

The ECESR filed the challenge 2931/69 to oblige the Interior Ministry to renew white taxi licenses without requiring a bank letter importing regularity of installment pay to be served by cab-drivers and –owners.

The Traffic Act had earlier been modified to suspend the taxis in service for more than 20 years and to be replaced by the white taxi. With the revolution of January 25, 2011 and the police withdrawal—which led to a state of chaos, security absence, frequent thefts of taxis, protests, sit-ins and banditry—cab-drivers suffered from accumulated debts and subsequently failed to pay the bank installments.

Consequently, the drivers have faced a dilemma: the Traffic Departments asked the owners of white taxis to bring a bank letter stating regularity in payment of installments as a pre-condition for the renewal of license, while the drivers can’t meet this condition for being in debt. It’s a big trouble and inescapable tragedy. On one hand, they can not drive without a taxi license or else they will be inevitably exposed to financial irregularities, fines or confiscating the taxi for driving with an expired license. On the other hand, complying with the traffic condition and putting the taxi in the garage will lead to the accumulation of debt and increase their overdue installments.

Traffic Act No. 155 didn’t stipulate bringing a bank letter, but stipulated specifications and requirements for the vehicle to be licensed, not to mention of being owned by the license applicants. The Traffic Departments may refrain from renewing vehicle licenses only if all those conditions are not met by applicants. If the motive for suspending vehicles is to ensure recovering public money, then the Traffic Departments must know that the national banks has put many guarantees such as the sale prohibition and banning the transfer of ownership without the consent of the bank and so on. Therefore, failing to renew vehicle licenses is an arbitrary measure on the part of the Traffic Departments.

This is the second challenge filed by the ECESR on behalf of white taxi owners. In the first challenge, ECESR claimed for halting the implementation of the negative decision that abstained from the formation of a technical financial and legal committee to re-evaluate the new white taxi price as a substitute for old taxis. The assessment should state the real price of the new taxi sold for any consumer in the Egyptian market, with clarification of the material value equivalent to the advantages and subsidy provided by the state for the participants in the project, along with re-fixing the price of the new taxi on the basis of this assessment.

White Taxi Challenge Notice