Ekurhuleni - About 10 taxi drivers are the latest casualties in ongoing violence between the Greater Brakpan Taxi Association and other operators.
This was confirmed by the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) Ekurhuleni region, which said the violence stemmed from an ongoing spat between the association and drivers working in the area.
Earlier, it was reported that eight people were arrested following a shooting at the Wenden and High streets intersection.
According to police, the deadly shooting followed a conflict between the taxi drivers and association executives over taxi routes between Tsakane and Brakpan.
"It is suspected that the taxi drivers who came to have a meeting with the executives were shot at by the security guards hired by the association.
"Three taxi drivers died at the scene one died upon arrival at the hospital. Six others are still being treated for gunshot wounds at the local hospital," Gauteng police spokesperson Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said.
Santaco Ekurhuleni secretary general Bhuti Mahlangu explained that the violence started four weeks ago when the association ordered "illegal" taxis to stop operating in the area.
Following this, one taxi owner and two security guards were shot dead, forcing Santaco to step on to try and resolve the issue.
"We attempted to have a meeting but we could not continue because of safety issues," he said.
The disgruntled operators then marched to the association's offices and this was when a shootout broke out between guards and the drivers.
Mahlangu was unable to confirm who fired first but said that most of those injured were taxi drivers.
"Santaco has since taken over operations and we're trying to get things back to normal," he said.
The guards have since been removed and taxis operations resumed.
Mahlangu confirmed that taxi operations would continue as normal and that police remained on high alert for any further developments.