News24

Working truckers continue to be targeted

2012-10-10 17:35

Cape Town - Four truck drivers were injured on Wednesday as a truckers' strike marred by violence entered its third week, with no end in sight.

Two truck drivers were attacked in Ekurhuleni in separate incidents, said metro police spokesperson Inspector Kobeli Mokheseng.

The first happened in the Germiston area at 10:00 near the corner of Rand and Oosthuizen streets when a truck was forced off the road by a group of people.

The driver was assaulted but ran to a nearby police station.

"Patrolling officers responded quickly and the group ran in different directions. The truck is not damaged and the driver sustained minor injuries," Mokheseng said.

At 11:10 in the Boksburg area, a 10-ton truck was stoned on Wit Deep road opposite the Jerusalem informal settlement.

Police arrived quickly and the attackers ran away.

Police escorted the truck back to its depot in Jet Park and the driver was taken to hospital to be treated for moderate injuries.

A third attack also happened in Germiston in the early hours when a group of men tried to set alight a truck on Refinery road with a petrol bomb.

"That petrol bomb didn't alight (sic). They tried but it failed," Mokheseng said.

Violence related to the truck driver's strike was also reported in KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape.

A truck driver was shot while driving on the N3 near Cato Ridge, KwaZulu-Natal paramedics said on Wednesday.

The man, in his forties, was hit in the leg on Tuesday night, ER24 spokesperson Derrick Banks said.

"After he was shot he drove himself about 10km to the Camperdown police station to get help," Banks said.

Police spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane confirmed the shooting, but could not provide more details as the driver had to be rushed to hospital before a statement was taken.

Banks said the driver was in a serious but stable condition. No arrests were made. Police were investigating a case of attempted murder.

Critical

In Cape Town, a truck driver was fighting for his life after protesters set him alight in Manenberg, the Cape Times reported on Wednesday.

"He's critical. They actually attacked him, poured petrol on him and set him alight," an unidentified doctor at GF Jooste Hospital in Manenberg was quoted as saying.

The driver, 62, was admitted on Monday afternoon with burns on his face and hand. His brain was injured from oxygen deprivation. The man was stabilised and transferred to a private hospital on Tuesday night.

Another truck was set alight in the Western Cape between Albertina and Riversdale on the N2.

The white Freightliner was hijacked shortly after midnight after the driver stopped next to the highway to rest.

"Four men, whose identity is not known (sic), approached him on foot and broke one of the windows, after which they got into the truck with the driver," said Captain Bernadine Steyn.

One of the hijackers drove the truck on the N2 until stopping near the Conville off-ramp.

The truck was then set alight. The hijackers fled the scene and are still at large.

The truck driver was not hurt during his ordeal.

The strike has left several trucks destroyed, people injured and at least one man dead.

Gary Stewart, 41, was struck on the head by a stone thrown through the window of his truck last Wednesday while driving on the N2 in Cape Town.

His life-support machines were switched off on Monday.

A similar strike by road freight unions in February 2011 left at least 20 trucks damaged, 16 people injured and scores of arrests as non-striking truckers were beaten and their trucks looted and burned.

Comments
  • sharon.erwin.96 - 2012-10-10 17:52

    So now burning trucks is not good enough anymore! Setting a person alight is unimaginable. Surely the perps must be striking drivers, even if the unions say they are not. If they aren't, then who are these people?

      Poloyatonki1.lee - 2012-10-10 18:47

      This drivers who are at work must be excluded, they dont deserve the increase after strike.

      tobydt - 2012-10-10 19:00

      They drivers who arent at work must all be shot. After the murders, they dont deserve to live.

      goldwright - 2012-10-10 19:22

      Well, Poloyatonki, "this truck drivers who are at work" - regardless of wether you think they should be striking, do NOT deserve to be shot and set alight! What do you have to say about THAT, besides your totally insensitive comment of "they don't deserve the increase after the strike"? What those violent strikers deserve, after the strike, is not only NO increase but NO job and to be thrown into prison for a long time, we do not need destructive people like that roaming our roads, who burn property/trucks and maim/kill their fellow humans. Give their jobs to the people who truly DESERVE those jobs. Is this really the freedom the majority people fought for in this country? I think not. Shameful, TOTALLY shameful.

      jayjay.mlungu - 2012-10-10 20:05

      Poloyandbraindead you are a prize chop!

      merven.halo - 2012-10-11 08:12

      The African mentality is mind boggling.

      darryl.maze.5 - 2012-10-11 10:31

      @ brainless Poloyatonki. They have every right to work in this democratic South Africa. Who the hell gives you the right to to tell them they should not be working and to shoot fellow working truck drivers??? You belong with the rest of those brainless savage striking workers and may a stray police bullet hit you.

  • kim.buren - 2012-10-10 18:00

    What does the cANCer do about this? F@ckall

  • mammudi.makgaleng.3 - 2012-10-10 18:10

    Hae! It's said that common sense is not common to everyone. When they decide to get back to work what are they going to drive? There will be few trucks to drive and this will lead to job cuts and who will be left unemployed? Ideology is not good at all.

  • louis.olivier.988 - 2012-10-10 18:13

    I don't understand the violence. If others don't want to join the strike is it necessary to murder them and burn the trucks. Is this another part of African culture? This country is supposed to be a democracy and freedom of choice is one value or is it only a democracy when the strike6sr choose it to be

  • evanknowles - 2012-10-10 19:08

    They ran off in different directions did they? I'd imagine in the confusion our police completely failed to catch any of them.

  • bibi.vanzyl - 2012-10-10 19:55

    I have not heard peep from our so called leaders. They are spending too much time with their financial advisors and architects. While the country is burning.

  • Beth Meyer Nevill - 2012-10-10 19:55

    The only drivers that should get a increase should be the ones still working and not costing us all money Savage !!!

  • jayjay.mlungu - 2012-10-10 20:07

    Simple solution: If you don't want to work do us a favour an F off. Leave those who are responsible enough to do what they want!

  • charnelle.bester - 2012-10-10 21:07

    Such a tragic state of affairs! I see so many truck drivers coming from JHB CBD, everyday, I do think that out of courtesy companies should give those still willing to work paid time off. It is getting far to dangerous!

  • keith.ngobeni - 2012-10-10 22:39

    I thank God for giving me courage,strength and wisdom to left south Africa after nelson Mandela's presidential term. Iam glad i did it because what is currently happening in my mother land is not pleasing at all, I will make sure to grip tight with my two hands on my British passport, ooh Lord thank you again for a peacefully,quite and safe Scotland.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-10-11 07:11

    Arrest them and charge them with attempted murder and murder... not aggrivated assult!!! There strikes are illegal and shame no one in H.R explained the clause about illegal strikes and insobordination. The CCMA cant even help these fools, Fire them!!!

      merven.halo - 2012-10-11 08:12

      NO, don't arrest them, shoot them with live ammunition as with the miners.

  • darryl.maze.5 - 2012-10-11 08:47

    Hey NEWS24! You guys are really getting pathetic with removing comments. I have the right at what I wanna say. There is nothing wrong with me saying working truck drivers must carry fire arms. There lives are in danger and they need to protect themselves because this government is doing nothing about it you bunch of twats!!!

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