Minibus Taxis Torched: Taxi Bosses Agree To Meet

The two taxi associations linked to the violence in which four minibus taxis were torched near Calton Centre in the Johannesburg CBD earlier on Saturday have agreed to meet. 

The Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport, which condemned the violence, said the Witwatersrand African Taxi Association (WATA) and the Nancefield Dube West Association (Nanduwe) have agreed to a meeting on Sunday.

As many as six other minibus taxis were damaged following skirmishes between drivers from WATA and Nanduwe.

“No injuries have been reported and a case of malicious damage to property has been opened,” said Jacob Mamabolo, Gauteng MEC for Public Transport and Roads infrastructure.

The Provincial Investigative Unit is investigating the case. Police are yet to arrest any suspects.

“We condemn these acts of violence between WATA and Nanduwe as they undermine the work that our department together with the taxi industry have been doing to stabilise the province,” said Mamabolo.

“We call on law enforcement to swiftly deal with those behind the violence.”

The conflict is over access to routes and the agreed meeting is an effort to stop the violence from escalating.

Police said the violence started on Friday when two taxi drivers were assaulted.

“We call on the taxi industry to refrain from violence. Their leadership should take responsibility and end this,” said Mamabolo.

He said that the province had been experiencing relative calm due to platforms that the provincial government has put in place to deal with matters of contention within the taxi industry.

“We have always advocated for negotiations as a way of dealing with conflicts amongst taxi associations.

“Days of solving conflict through violence are behind us here in Gauteng. This is the reason why I am extremely disappointed with the associations involved.”