MAYHEM: The scene in Brakpan after four taxi drivers were gunned down. Picture: Simphiwe Mbokazi/ANA

Johannesburg - The Brakpan taxi rank in Ekurhuleni would be re-opened on Friday following a peace agreement between warring taxi groups, Gauteng Transport MEC Ismael Vadi said.

Vadi said the Greater Brakpan Taxi Association (GBTA), SANTACO- Ekurhuleni regional council and representatives of the Concerned Group of Drivers jointly signed a peace agreement on Thursday night in the presence of government officials and law enforcement authorities.

They all pledged to uphold taxi ranks as gun free zones, end taxi violence in the area, and adhere to the conditions of operating licenses.

Vadi said this was a ''step in the right direction''.

''This creates the possibility for normalisation of public transport services in Brakpan and Tsakane. I have therefore determined that the Tsakane taxi rank will be re-opened by midday today [Friday] and minibus taxi services will resume in the area,'' he said.

Vadi on Wednesday shut down the taxi rank following the killing of four taxi drivers in violent clashes that started over the weekend.  Eight people, six of whom were believed to be private security guards and two taxi owners, were arrested in connection with the killings.

Police confiscated four pistols and five high calibre rifles during the arrests.  

African News Agency/ANA