METER taxi owners from the Underberg Meter Taxi Association have called for additional safety following an incident of a meter taxi driver being robbed on November 3. A case of armed robbery, possession of an unlicenced firearm and ammunition was opened against a 39-year-old man who was arrested for allegedly robbing a meter taxi driver in Underberg on November 3. It is alleged that two men asked to be taken by the driver to a farm area outside Underberg. “When they arrived at the farm, the suspects turned against the 34-year-old meter taxi driver and took his licenced firearm and two cellphones. The suspects fled the scene in another getaway motor vehicle,” said SAPS Colonel Thembeka Mbhele, who added that the local SAPS were alerted to the robbery and started to look for the suspects.The police officers spotted the vehicle in the area and a chase ensued. The driver lost control of the vehicle, which overturned. “One suspect was arrested while two managed to escape. “SAPS have seized four cellphones, a firearm that was taken from the victim and ammunition. “Two of the recovered cellphones were positively identified as belonging to the victim,” said Mbhele.The arrested man appeared in Himeville Magistrate’s Court on November 6 and was not granted bail.Meter taxi owners have appealed to the court to give criminals heavy sentences. The association’s chairperson, Mlungisi Dludla, said meter taxis work 24 hours, transporting residents to various destinations but criminals are putting their lives at risk.“In 2016, a meter taxi driver was robbed by criminals who pretended to be clients, and again in 2017, a meter taxi was hijacked from its driver. “Our work is dangerous, mostly at night, and we need protection from both the public and police,” he said.