Taxi wars cross the border

By Drum Digital
13 June 2014

The ongoing tension between Lesotho and South African taxi associations has resulted in clashes and stranded commuters.

The ongoing tension between Lesotho and South African taxi associations has resulted in clashes and stranded commuters – and it’s not yet over.

Riza Mthembu has been stranded in the cold for over 10 hours. The Mosotho businesswoman was on her way home to Ladybrand in the Free State, after visiting her sister in the Lesotho capital of Maseru, when she was caught in the war between taxi operators from South Africa and Lesotho. “I can’t go home and I can’t go back to my sister’s place,” Riza says. “We are stuck here and it’s freezing cold.”

Riza’s plight is shared with many commuters milling about the Taxido Junction, a taxi rank in Vereeniging, south of Johannesburg, which is on the taxi route to Maseru – the route also runs through Senekal in the Free State. But the service has stalled amid rising tensions between taxi operators from South Africa and Lesotho – leading to violence and bloodshed ¬and leaving commuters, such as Riza, stranded.

A week or so ago clashes between members of the Morning Star Taxi Association and their Basotho rivals led to the closure of the main border post ….

Read more in DRUM – 19 June, 2014.

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