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Cape Town – Gauteng Transport MEC Jacob Mamabolo says he was shocked that police still have not solved more than 500 murder cases linked to the taxi industry in the province.
He spoke to The Star after the days of war between members of the Witwatersrand Taxi Association (Wata) and the Nancefield / Dube West Taxi Association (Nanduwe).
These taxi associations, which operate mainly between Johannesburg and Soweto, have been fighting on the roads for years and in some cases the fighting has claimed many lives.
âWe are also still concerned that the 500 murder cases reported by the Taxi Violence Commission of Inquiry remain unresolved.
This means that the killers of these 500 people are walking the streets. It’s the commission that says it, not me, âsaid Mamabolo.
Mamabolo said he was concerned about the militarized nature of the taxi industry and even went so far as to secure a court ban to ensure certain security companies do not operate in the taxi industry. Taxi.
In most cases, security companies found themselves with illegal firearms and intimidated passengers and other members of the taxi industry.
âI asked for a ban to arrest the Wata paramilitary security company. They are said to be at the center of the chaos in the province. They were found attacking commuters on buses with guns.
âThey also complain about their activities destabilizing the industry in Soweto. They are a law in themselves. This is a test case for all private security companies.
Mamabolo said Johannesburg was almost set on fire due to tensions in the industry and that there had been no arrests. He said the industry was home to a lot of criminal activity and that most of the time no one was required to book was a concern.
âIn addition to these 500, we do not count the cases for which cases have been closed. Add to that the cases where nothing has happened. What do we say to the families of these people? Mamabolo said.
He proposed several plans to get the taxi industry in Gauteng in order, including a digital data system that would identify all taxi drivers and business owners.
This would allow the government to know who is working in the industry and would help police fight criminal activity in the industry.
âWe need to create a data mine in the taxi industry. I’m already starting because you can’t transform the industry if you don’t know who is who in the room.
âWe have the best biometric technology and I need this technology in the taxi industry. We will work with Home Affairs, âsaid Mamabolo.
He said it was important for drivers to acquire professional customer service training and formal training to ensure the taxi industry holds those who work in it accountable. He also called for greater involvement of young people and women in the industry.
Mamabolo had the following message for the taxi industry: âPlease respect human life and you will not get rich through human blood.
âThey can shed as much blood as they can; it will never help them. Please stop these activities which border on contempt for human life.