By Monique Duval (IOL)
Cape Town – A taxi guard from Bonteheuwel is causing a stir on social media after he said he will be offering free rides to pensioners over 70 years old.
The Facebook post made by Yaseen Abrahams, 25, has gone viral in various community groups where he is being applauded for his selfless initiative.
Speaking to the Daily Voice on Thursday, Abrahams explains that along with his driver, Ashraf Cassiem, 38, they have been allowing elderly people to ride without paying for a long time as they have seen them struggling.
The duo says as long as they meet the targets set out by the taxi owner, David Roman, they are free to assist the older people.
Abrahams says in 2016 he faced his biggest heartbreak when his mother Fatima, 54, died after several heart attacks and strokes.
“It broke my heart because I loved my mother. Working as a taxi driver I see a lot of pensioners every day that can’t even afford the taxi fare, and we often give them free rides,” says Abrahams.
“Every day we get taxed by the gangsters who ask for money or make us give them lifts, so I thought then why can’t the old people who really need it, not ride for free? A lot of them are sick and can’t walk to the clinics and stuff.”
Pensioners aged 70 and older can ride for free starting at 9am each weekday and after 10am on weekends, if they need to go to Athlone or Cape Town.
The taxi guard says he got a fright to see the response from Facebook users and is now appealing to other taxi drivers, owners and taxi guards to open their hearts and do the same.
“I hope they will also do this and together we can help make the last years of their lives better. They have given so much to us as children and as a community,” adds Abrahams.
Pastor Abie Clayton, 58, welcomed the initiative and said: “This is something positive for the community of Bonteheuwel. Many will be happy about this because currently there is no pensioner’s discount when taking a taxi. This will save them.”