Taxi driver killed; boy, 4, injured in Ceres shooting
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Cape Town - Yet another taxi driver was shot and killed in Ceres this morning when unknown gunmen opened fire while he was transporting school children.
A 4-year-old boy was also shot and injured during the shooting in Eluxolweni Street.
Eye-witnesses said about three people approached the taxi and one of them fired several shots. Frightened pupils started screaming while the men fled the scene. The taxi driver died on the spot while the boy was transported to hospital.
Community leader Thembi Sifile called for intervention from the national government.
“I call for intervention from the national ministry, SAPS and Transport. The community does not feel safe at all. If things continue this way we will no longer want to use taxis. We might as well walk or we be given buses.”
Five taxi drivers were shot and killed in Ceres last week.
The shootings between Cata and Codeta in the area started in 2016. It is believed that the killings are over routes.
Ward councillor Nomzame Phatsoane said the ongoing shootings make their lives difficult.
“It is painful, what makes it more painful is that no one wants to intervene. Both associations are accusing each other of violence. When we put them around a table the meetings end with them fighting each other.”
She added that she fears more children might get shot if the shootings do not stop.
“There are about 12 taxis that transport school children, we are worried that those children will get caught in the crossfire. We have suggested that parents use private transport to guarantee the safety of their children.”
Police spokesperson Colonel Andrè Traut said they are investigating the shooting.
“The circumstances surrounding a murder and attempted murder are being investigated following an incident this morning at around 7am in Eluxolweni Street, Nduli, Ceres, where a 26-year-old taxi driver was fatally wounded.
“A four-year-old boy, who was a passenger in the taxi, suffered a gunshot wound and was admitted to the hospital where he is being treated.
“The suspects fled the scene and are yet to be arrested. Any person with information regarding the incident is kindly requested to contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111.”
Another six taxi drivers were shot and killed in Cape Town at the weekend. This brings the total death of taxi-related killings to 52 for this year alone.
MEC of Transport and Public Works Daylin Mitchell has warned that he will close ranks and routes if the killings do not stop.
“I strongly condemn these killings. The safety of citizens who use public transport, especially mini-bus taxis to commute to and from work, is my prime consideration. I will therefore take whatever steps available to me within my mandate to ensure that public transport commuters are safe.”
He said he would also be approaching Minister Albert Fritz about the possibility of putting up a reward for information to assist the SAPS in their investigation. | Weekend Argus