The bloody incident left three others injured. Scelo Nkosi, originally from Hluhluwe, northern KwaZulu-Natal and is in his 30s, had just finished a night shift at Hertne Court students’ residence and was walking with a colleague to the nearby train station.
The father of a one-month-old baby was going to catch a train to Umlazi, where he rented a room. Suddenly, shots rang out and Nkosi was hit in the crossfire. He died on the scene.
It is believed that a group of heavily armed men in a minibus taxi stormed the taxi rank at 5.30am and began shooting at taxi bosses. Security guards believed to have been hired by taxi operators to guard their operations at the rank returned fire.
“We are extremely shocked … Nkosi was a dedicated security guard. He was a breadwinner for his one-month-old baby and his wife. It is very sad that the child will grow up not knowing who his father is,” said Silas Modiba, Nkosi’s colleague at M17 Security Services.
Modiba said another colleague was being treated in hospital for shock. According to unconfirmed reports, the shooting was related to a taxi dispute and a taxi boss was among 11 suspects arrested on the scene. But police could not confirm this.
Provincial police spokesperson Thulani Zwane said the identity of the suspects had not yet been established. Thirty guns were recovered from the scene, he added.
Zwane said the three injured people, one of whom was a suspect, were rushed to hospital. A taxi driver said the shooting had scared customers off. “People are frightened to come inside the rank. This is not business as usual.”
South African Taxi Council provincial deputy chairperson Bheki Mbambo appealed for calm and for peace to be restored in the Durban area.