De Lille: Nyanga violence politically motivated

2014-09-01 18:09
(Thami Moyo, Interpark)

(Thami Moyo, Interpark)

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Cape Town - Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille said on Monday that the violence in Nyanga was politically motivated, after a taxi driver was shot dead and buses set alight amid a protest.

"Today's attacks on public transport infrastructure are clearly well-orchestrated and driven by the desire to make the city ungovernable."

De Lille said it was "clear" these actions were politically motivated and part of a campaign to make the city ungovernable ahead of the 2016 local government elections.

She said the city would monitor the situation closely and help contain it with police.

De Lille said there had been sporadic stone-throwing incidents in Nyanga and Philippi, traffic disruptions along the N2 highway, and tyres set alight on the corner of Vanguard and Oliver Tambo drives.

The city temporarily withdrew some of its staff from the area because of threats of violence.

Police spokesperson Captain Frederick van Wyk said the 39-year-old man from Zwelitsha was apparently shot while on his way to work.

Witnesses heard gunshots shortly after 06:00. Van Wyk said the man was apparently robbed of his firearm. The motive for the shooting was unknown. No arrests had been made.

The shooting occurred at the same time as a violent protest in the area, in which seven buses were set alight and four badly damaged.

Golden Arrow Bus Services spokesperson Bronwen Dyke said 11 bus drivers were pulled from their vehicles and assaulted.

Taxi drivers

It was believed the crowd could have been taxi drivers who were protesting.

On a nearby portion of the N2 freeway, close to Borchards Quarry, a MyCiti bus travelling to town from Khayelitsha was stoned, the city's transport mayoral committee member Brett Herron said.

He said no one was injured but the bus was withdrawn from service because its windows were badly damaged.

Around three hours later, he said, a group stopped a MyCiti bus on Mew Way.

"The passengers were forced to disembark whereafter the driver managed to drive away before the thugs could set the bus alight."

The city's transport body, Transport for Cape Town, suspended the MyCiti N2 express service to Khayelitsha following the incident. The service resumed on Monday afternoon.

Golden Arrow initially suspended its service in Nyanga and instead operated from two nearby locations. On Monday afternoon, Dyke said buses would be operating on the outskirts of Delft, Mfuleni and Nyanga and only travel up to certain points because of safety concerns.

The company had been in meetings with the police and other parties.

"They [the police] have assured us that there will be a very strong police presence in the area... we don't want to take any chances. The most important thing to us are our drivers and passengers."

Read more on:    patricia de lille  |  cape town  |  crime

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