Two killed, one critical after ‘taxi hit’ in Verulam
Andile Hlela and Zamani Simamane died in a hail of bullets near the Verulam police station yesterday. The identity of the third victim was not confirmed.
Security company Reaction Unit South Africa said people reported that a volley of shots was being fired at a VW Golf.
Spokesperson Prem Balram said Hlela was shot multiple times and died in the vehicle. Simamane died in hospital.
Witnesses said the occupants of a car that pulled up next to the Golf opened fire using high-calibre rifles.
Hlela and Simamane belonged to the Thuthuka Taxi Association.
Last October, the Daily News reported that taxi driver Mlungisi Maphumulo, 27, was shot in the head in Hazelmere, near Verulam. Two men believed to have been involved were shot dead a day later.
Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said murder dockets were opened at the Verulam police station.
Sifiso Shangase, manager of the SA National Taxi Council KwaZulu-Natal, said he was shocked by the incident. He said the shooting would be addressed this week at the organisation’s annual general meeting in Dundee.
He said there were investigations into what caused taxi shootings in the province and how they could be resolved.
Sifiso Mthethwa, deputy chairperson of Santaco in KZN and chairman of the Greater North Taxi Association, which includes Verulam, said he did not know about the incident.
The association would look into the matter and if there was conflict, would try to resolve it, he said.
Melusi Mathunjwa, from the Thuthuka Taxi Association which operates in the area, said the association was shocked by the incident, but would not comment further as it was subject to a police investigation.