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Cape Town taxi strike: Two people killed, 3 injured and several roads blocked

Two people were shot in separate incidents during the taxi strike in Cape Town on Monday morning.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Novela Potelwa said the first death occurred when a motorist fired shots at “assailants” who appeared to have been stoning vehicles.

“An individual was shot dead and three others injured after a motorist was pelted with stones on Airport Approach Road. The driver responded to the attack by firing several shots,” she said.

Potelwa said police were investigating a murder and attempted murder.

A second person was killed on Borcherds Quarry Road, close to the N2 highway.

Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Joseph Swartbooi said officers found the body of the 28-year-old man.

He had been shot multiple times.

“The victim was declared deceased on the scene by the medical personnel. The unknown suspects fled the scene and are yet to be arrested,” Swartbooi said.

“The motive for this attack is believed to be taxi related.”

A motorist was shot and his vehicle torched.

A motorist was shot and his vehicle torched.
Bertram Malgas/News24

 

News24 has unconfirmed reports that the victim’s vehicle was torched after the shooting.

Meanwhile, four buses were set alight during the protest action, numerous roads were blocked and commuters experienced lengthy delays as they tried to get to their destinations.

According to Potelwa, police officers were deployed to hotspots around the city.

“Additional forces, including air support, are en route to a number of locations where traffic interruptions and other incidents have been reported,” Potelwa said.

Golden Arrow Bus Services spokesperson Bronwen Dyke-Beyer said two buses had been set alight at a taxi blockade in Borcherds Quarry Road early on Monday morning.

Later in the morning, a bus was set alight in Govan Mbeki Road and another in Sheffield Road.

Dyke-Beyer said there hadn’t been any injuries.

Western Cape Police Oversight and Community Safety MEC Reagen Allen said contingency plans were adopted to ensure that the torching of law enforcement vehicles in Delft would have no operational impact on the deployment of Law Enforcement Advancement (LEAP) officers in the area.

On Saturday night, a City depot in Delft was petrol-bombed and at least seven vehicles belonging to different departments, including law enforcement, were damaged or completely destroyed.

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said in a statement that he was “gravely concerned at the devastating impact” of the taxi strike.

He said a special cabinet meeting will be held on Monday morning with key leadership from the City of Cape Town to “assess what further steps need to be taken”.

I am appalled at the scale of violence that has not only dealt a severe blow to our economy and critical services but has also delegitimised and damaged Santaco-WC’s cause. This violence and damage to property has continued this morning,” he said.

Winde also called for dialogue to resolve the dispute.

The latest incidents come during a standoff between Santaco and the City of Cape Town over taxi impoundments.

Golden Arrow Bus Services obtained an interdict against Santaco on Sunday, but warned commuters to expect delays on Monday morning as buses were unable to operate from several areas in Cape Town. Several buses were torched last week, and there were unconfirmed reports that more buses had been torched on Monday morning.

Dyke-Beyer said buses are not able to operate in Khayelitsha, Nyanga, Philippi East, Langa, and Mfuleni.

On Sunday, talks between Santaco and City and provincial authorities were suspended, taking the taxi stayaway into its fifth day after Thursday’s impromptu withdrawal of services.

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