Taxi violence increases

FILE PICTURE. Taxi rank. Picture: Mariné Jacobs.

A total of 108 cases related to taxi violence remain under investigation in Gauteng, with 31 cases currently at different stages in court.

Police said yesterday 87 suspects had been charged in these cases dating back to 2006, with some awaiting trial in police custody and others out on bail.

Deputy provincial commissioner for detective services Major-General Tebello Mosikili said all taxi violence investigations in the province had been centralised to a group of detectives, who form part of the provincial detective unit.

In the latest shooting incident, Dorljota Taxi Association chairperson Vusi Shabangu was shot and killed in Dobsonville, Soweto on Tuesday. Shabangu had worked closely with the Gauteng department of roads and transport and had regular meetings with MEC Ismail Vadi to discuss issues affecting taxi operations.

Shabangu was described by Vadi as being “an innovative leader who contributed a lot to growing the taxi industry”.

Mosikili confirmed there were three other taxi-related murders in Actonville, Benoni, this past weekend.

“Bhekizitha Shezi was shot and killed at his residence in Watville hostel on Saturday. Two other people, who were with him, were injured. The deceased was a member of the Benoni Taxi Association,” she said.

Mduduzi Khumalo, 45, was attacked and shot several times while he was sitting in his parked taxi on Snake Road in Actonville. No arrests were made.

On Sunday, Ntshingela Petros, a marshall at the Benoni taxi rank, was killed at his home in the Watville hostel. He was shot seven times and died at the scene.

“The police are appealing to community members to come forward and assist uss,” said Mosikili. Police offered a R100 000 reward for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of suspects.

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