Yogyakarta government says it will ban Go-Jek, Grab, Uber and all other ride-hailing services

A woman rides on the back of a motorbike, part of the Go-Jek ride-hailing service, on a busy street in central Jakarta, Indonesia December 18, 2015. REUTERS/Garry Lotulung
A woman rides on the back of a motorbike, part of the Go-Jek ride-hailing service, on a busy street in central Jakarta, Indonesia December 18, 2015. REUTERS/Garry Lotulung

Although the balance between traditional taxis and the new wave of ride-hailing services like Go-Jek, Grab and Uber seems to have reached an equilibrium in Jakarta (after some violent protests about one year ago), their spread into other areas of Java have recently been met by fierce (and sometimes violent) demonstrations by local public transport drivers.

In Yogyakarta, taxi drivers have held several protests in front of the Sultan’s Palace demanding that online taxis be banned. There have also been incidences of violence, such as one taxi’s attack on a Go-Car driver last month which led to this harrowing car chase that was caught on video.

Well, it appears the outcry from drivers (and their operators) of traditional transportation options have finally won out over the ride-hailing apps, with the Yogyakarta Regional Government saying they will implement a complete ban on online taxis and ojeks.

“All online vehicles such as Go-Jek, Go-Car and Grab Car and Uber will be banned. Because they are unlicensed,” said Gatot Saptadi, the of Yogyakarta’s Transportation Department, on Friday as quoted by Metro TV.

In fact, the national government has already officially okayed the existence of ride-hailing apps in Indonesia as long as they meet a number of regulatory requirements, which means Yogyakarta will have to obtain an exception from the Ministry of Transportation to enact their regional ban.

Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono X is currently drafting the regulations that will serve as the foundation of the ban and they are expected to be completed and applied as soon as this week.

Gatot said that the ban on ride-hailing apps will be offset by an increase the number of vehicles on the TransJogja line.

Yogyakarta Police Chief Ahmad Dofiti asked that all online transport drivers cease operation immediately and said they would crack down on those who continued to pick up customers.

Following violent protests in Bandung, the government of West Java has also said that it would be implementing a ban ride-hailing services.

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