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Fears of taxi violence resurgence after two Cape Town owners gunned down

Fears of taxi violence resurgence after  two Cape Town owners gunned down
File picture of forensic officials taking pictures of the bullet holes from a minibus taxi.(Photo by Gallo Images / Die Burger / Edrea du Toit)

Santaco in the Western Cape calls for calm following the killing of two taxi owners in Nyanga.

The fatal shooting of two taxi owners in Nyanga on Wednesday afternoon has renewed fears of a flareup of violent taxi conflict in Cape Town.

The taxi owners, who belong to the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata), were exiting Holy Cross Church in Nyanga where the association held a meeting when they came under attack. 

Their names are not yet available. 

Police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk said Nyanga police are investigating a double murder case following the shooting incident. 

“At about 13:00 at Nyanga taxi rank, two adult males were shot and fatally wounded.

“The motive for this incident forms part of the police investigation. The suspect/s fled the scene and are yet to be arrested.” 

The association’s spokesperson Nkululeko Sityebi said: “They were attacked while coming out of a local church near the taxi rank where they had held a meeting. The incident did not occur at the taxi rank”. 

He said they did not know why the owners were shot and urged the police to leave no stone unturned in hunting down the shooters. 

Taxis were operating smoothly on Thursday with no incidents reported. 

There had been no incidents of taxi violence in the city for the past three months with the last taxi-related killing happening in Khayelitsha which is under Congress for Democratic Taxi Association (Codeta)

Before that, four people had died in May and June 2023 with two killed in Paarl just days apart as the fight over the contested B97 route erupted again.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Bodies pile up as Cape Town taxi violence continues to rage in bloody Cata and Codeta rivalry

Cape Town was in the grip of an eight-day chaotic taxi strike in August last year that saw multiple incidents of violence, including five deaths.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Western Cape taxi strike updates

The industry was up in arms over various issues including the impoundments of their vehicles which resulted in a bloody stay away. 

Local CPF member Dumisani Qwebe said they also do not have information on what caused the recent killing but are pleading with the taxi industry to not return to the violence they experienced last year. 

“There are fears that the violence might erupt again,” he said. “Before this incident, we had planned a meeting with the industry to discuss commuter safety issues and we will still press on to have that meeting because we do not want commuter’s lives put at risk,” Qwebe said.

SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) spokesperson Nceba Enge said they are still shocked over what happened in Nyanga. “There is no fight between Cata and Codeta, this incident left us shocked. We are looking into the cause and are calling for calm from our members and commuters at large.” 

Any person with information regarding the incident is kindly requested to contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111 or by using the My SAPS mobile application. DM

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