The Bara Taxi Rank on Friday morning was almost unrecognisable with only a limited number of taxis available.
Queue marshals were seen summoning commuters, but instead of multiple shouts at the same time, only a few voices could be heard.
The only queue that could be considered lengthy at the taxi rank was the one with commuters traveling to the Joburg CBD who were likely to catch further transportation to reach their final destination.
One driver said government instructed them to start at 5 am, meaning they had a shorter shift.
The drivers said they were told that each vehicle should not be ferrying more seven people at a time, but they were continuing as normal.
A Joburg metro police officer has arrived at the Baragwanath taxi rank to monitor the loading of taxi’s there.
The taxis there have been filled to capacity since 5 am but a short while ago, one metro police vehicle with a single officer arrived at this rank.
According to the queue marshals, the officer only spoke to some of them.
The marshal for Joburg CBD taxis has told EWN that they would continue as usual until their associations give them different instruction.
At the same time, the Cape Town station deck is far quieter on the first day of the nationwide lockdown with only a handful of people who could be seen catching taxis.
On any other day, the area is packed with commuters. A few taxis were parked at the station deck, but the majority were not in operation.
People could be seen getting into a taxi to leave the CBD, many had finished working nightshifts.
The Golden Arrow Bus terminus was usually also bustling, but only three buses were spotted there.
Few people could be seen in the streets, the majority of them were wearing gloves and face masks.
Three police vehicles stood parked along Strand Street with traffic services vehicles spotted patrolling main roads leading into the city centre.
In KwaZulu-Natal, it appeared several businesses and residents in Durban had adhered to the lockdown.
In the industrial town of Isipingo, south of Durban, law enforcement officers told EWN that since they began their operations on Friday morning, they were not forced to turn away commuters as they had all complied with the conditions of the national lockdown.
But essential services said more police officers needed to be deployed in residential areas.
Fewer commuters were seen on the roads and officers manning the roadblocks said taxi drivers had ensured that commuters were seated in line with the regulations of the lockdown.
Drivers of private vehicles had ensured that they had all the necessary documentation to prove that they provided essential services.
But Simakakuhle Sithunzi, a private security officer, said while the order was being maintained in the city centre, it needed to be also enforced in residential areas.
“Some people who are at home now are not taking the national lockdown seriously. Some of them were busy drinking in groups, which could jeopardise the intention of this lockdown,” he said.
KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala was expected to deliver an update on the first day of the lockdown later on Friday.
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