Cape Town taxi strike: We debunk the fake news

Picture: Oupa Mokoena / African News Agency (ANA)

Picture: Oupa Mokoena / African News Agency (ANA)

Published Aug 7, 2023


Members of the public have been warned against indiscriminately sharing voice notes and messages circulated about the taxi strike and violence.

In a statement released on Monday afternoon, Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security Alderman JP Smith urged residents to check news before spreading it, as their staff has checked out numerous other incidents that turned out to be negative.

“If you are unable to verify information firsthand, please do not distribute it, as it creates unnecessary panic, but also diverts enforcement resources from where they are needed,” said Smith in the statement.

This is what we know to be factual:

– There was protest action in Philippi, with over 150 protesters on site and one vehicle set alight.

– A vehicle was torched at Lansdowne and Stock Road.

– Four vehicles were set alight at Mew Way and Japhta K Masemola Road

– There was protest action at Govan Mbeki and Duinefontein Road, where approximately 150 protesters took to the streets.

– Shots were fired at a Metro Police Nyala on the N2 ramp to Borcherds Quarry

– A protest took place in Hout Bay, outside SAPS headquarters. Protesters burnt tyres and stoned vehicles.

Taxis were impounded and removed at Airport Approach Road.

One person was killed and three injured after a driver fired several shots in retaliation for being pelted with stones.

Fake news about the taxi strike includes but is not limited to:

Fake: Looting and looming shutdown at malls such as Canal Walk and Watergate Mall.

Fact: Canal Walk tweeted and confirmed that the shopping centre is open and trading as usual, with the exception of certain stores that may be closed due to the taxi strike. Watergate Mall authorities have also denied looting or shooting.

Fake: A Golden Arrow bus being driven and controlled by protesters.

Fact: The video is old and has nothing to do with the strike.

Fake: Schools are being torched or attacked amid the taxi strike.

Fact: The Western Cape Education Department has urged the public to refrain from circulating the above fake news.