'We have not lost control‚' says Santaco after taxi massacre
Taxi industry leader Phillip Taaibosch on Monday insisted that his organisation was in control of its members‚ despite ongoing violence and killings.
“Yes‚ we are in control of the industry … We don’t know what was the quarrel about‚” he told radio station 702 on Monday‚ in reaction to the massacre of 11 people in a minibus taxi at the weekend in KwaZulu-Natal.
“What needs to be done is to go to the ground to investigate what has happened. Serious action has to be taken‚” he added.
Taaibosch is the president of the SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) which is an umbrella body that governs the structure of the taxi industry in South Africa.
He said it was not true that the taxi industry had become a “field of war”.
“It is only that we have those people who still think the taxi industry can be used as a field of war. We should condemn that in the strongest terms because the entire country does not have this war. This is happening in a particular area and that is between Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.”
On Saturday‚ 11 people linked to a Gauteng-based taxi association were gunned down while travelling between the towns of Colenso and Weenen.
The ambush occurred when members of the Ivory Park Taxi Association were returning home after attending a colleague’s funeral. Four people were also critically wounded when gunmen opened fire on the vehicle.
Taaibosch said Santaco condemned the incident.
“We will only be happy when the perpetrators are not only arrested for a few days but we should have a possible conviction.”
He said those found to have been involved in killings should have their operating licences taken away.
“What is happening is uncalled for. If people are arrested‚ they should be sent to jail‚” he said.
Taaibosch said Santaco was probing the cause of violence in the taxi industry.