Mystery deepens

2014-01-31 00:00

WAS it a random criminal hijacking or was it a hit?

A day after the murder of a prominent taxi boss and high school teacher, there is still no clarity on why he was gunned down and who the gunman is.

The Witness reported yesterday that Bongani Clement Zondi (52) was shot dead in the driveway of his Chase Valley Road home as he prepared to go to the gym for his morning work-out.

His white Toyota Hilux was found abandoned at the kwaMpumuza area in Plessislaer only hours later. Only his cellphone was missing.

The Grey’s and Chase Valley taxi association believe it was a criminal act, not associated with the industry.

Association chairperson Mkhanyiselwa Mazibuko told The Witness that they are still in shock over Zondi’s death.

Zondi was a teacher at Sukuma Comprehensive high school while also operating his taxi business.

Mazibuko said, “We are asking ourselves why this happened? We had no in-fighting and are a peaceful association. We lost a good member who did not want chaos in the association. It’s clear that this incident was a criminal act coming from outside the industry.”

Department of Education spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi sent condolences to Zondi’s family and the school. “It is sad that we lost a member of the staff at Sukuma who was contributing to the education system,” he said.

A source who asked not to be named said Zondi was a peacemaker in the taxi industry.

Meanwhile, KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison, Willies Mchunu, said yesterday he was disturbed to have learnt of the killing of a taxi driver, Sandile Zuma, in the Mpophomeni area.

“It is disturbing to hear of the killing of Zuma in Mpophomeni, which follows other as yet unexplained killings in the taxi industry recently, although at this stage we have not been able to link these killings to violence within the industry,” said Mchunu.

He said his department have noted that there were tensions in the area between the Zimeleni taxi association and the people who call themselves Ibhodwe, which both operate in Howick area.

According to department records, Ibhodwe is not a registered taxi association. “Since we have not yet concluded investigations it would be premature to point fingers and say this incident is linked to the known tensions.”

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