Court rejects lawsuit against Istanbul Municipality over decision to convert minibuses into taxis

A Turkish court has rejected a lawsuit filed against the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (İBB) over its decision to convert 2,125 minibuses into taxis.

Duvar English

A Turkish court has turned down a taxi cooperative’s lawsuit against the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (İBB) concerning the municipality’s decision to convert redundant minibuses (dolmuş in Turkish) into taxis to solve the city’s chronic taxi problem.

İBB General Secretary Deputy Dr. Buğra Gökçe announced the court’s ruling on social media, by saying: “I have goods news for Istanbulites. A while ago, we had taken the decision to turn minibuses on idle minibus routes into taxis. The lawsuit launched by a taxi cooperative to prevent this has been turned down with a precedent decision. We have won. Istanbul has won.”

The taxi cooperative in question has 30 days to appeal the decision with the Istanbul Regional Administrative Court, an appeals court.

In November, the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s Transportation Coordination Center (UKOME) had approved the decision to turn 2,125 minibuses into taxis. As of Jan. 16, minibus drivers wanting to partake in this process started to apply to the municipality.  

The municipality has been saying that the number of taxi licenses has been 17,359 for 30 years without ever changing and it is simply not sufficient to serve the megacity, home to 16 million people.