Hout Bay taxi violence: Cele promises to lock perpetrators up 'until Jesus returns'

Police Minister Bheki Cele has vowed that those who are found guilty of the Hout Bay taxi bloodbath, which claimed the lives of four people last Monday, will not be treated with kid gloves.

Cele promised that arrests would be made soon and that the perpetrators would be locked up "until Jesus returns".

He was speaking at a community engagement in the Western Cape town on Monday morning where members of the local taxi association and residents aired their grievances.

"Government must not play around [in dealing with taxi violence] because if government plays around, taxi operators will play around as well and continue with the violence," said Cele.

"If a taxi operator is found to have been involved in last week's violence, then that person will be arrested and the forfeiture unit will seize their taxis," Cele promised.

Dozens of shots were fired in and around the local sports field last Monday. News24 reported last week that two people were injured.

Cele also responded to calls for an inquiry into taxi violence in the province, saying there was no need for one: "This issue is easy, police must arrest people who kill people."

One arrested

Cele was joined by provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula, deputy provincial commissioner for crime and detection, Jeremy Veary, and Western Cape MEC for Community Safety, Alan Winde, among others.

Veary provided an update on arrests made so far.

"Currently, there is one person who has been arrested. The person is connected to the taxi industry," he said.

Veary added that firearms had been confiscated and that they were waiting for ballistics reports to establish whether the confiscated firearms were used in last week's violence.

The search for one other suspect is still ongoing, according to Veary.

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