Powerful taxi association – SANTACO – on Tuesday heeded President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call to defend lives and property from violent looters.
“SANTACO in Tshwane has directed all Taxi Associations in the region to go out in full force to protect all shopping malls in the city against the rising looting that’s largely taking place in the city of Joburg,” said Abner Tsebe, Chairman of SANTACO in Tshwane.
Tsebe said the decision was effective immediately.
“The taxi industry in Tshwane has taken this position in anticipation of the events in Joburg City spiraling to the Tshwane,” said Tsebe.
“The leadership of the industry strongly warns those with intentions to loot to desist from any attempts as they will find the industry waiting.”
Shopping malls in Alexandra, Soweto and Voosloorus have been looted and vandalised.
At least 19 people have died in Johannesburg in the violent looting. Total deaths in the country related to the unrest so far stand at 45.
Police assisted by the army have arrested more than 700 suspects for public violence and looting.
“This vandalism will not only destroy jobs but will consequently affect taxi industry business,” said Tsebe.
“It is therefore in our interests to stand against this form of outrageous thuggery.
“It must be noted that our efforts do no replace law enforcement.”