53 arrested during Cape Town taxi strike chaos

2017-09-19 16:47
A MyCiTi burns as a result of the taxi protest in Cape Town. (Kenny Africa)

A MyCiTi burns as a result of the taxi protest in Cape Town. (Kenny Africa)

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Cape Town – A total of 53 people were arrested in Nyanga during a minibus taxi strike that saw roads being barricaded, buses set alight and commuters injured, Western Cape police said on Tuesday.

They were arrested for allegedly looting businesses in the Nyanga area during the strike on Monday, said warrant officer Henrietta van Niekerk.

She said some people had "made use of the chaotic circumstances" to commit the crimes.

The offences included business robbery, malicious damage to property, public violence and possession of stolen property.

The arrested men and women were between the ages of 18 and 25.

They were all set to appear in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.

Taxi drivers suspended their strike on Monday afternoon.

READ: MyCiTi bus torched in Cape Town taxi strike

The morning had been marked by sporadic violence, with two buses torched and at least 52 people injured.

The strike was called off after Western Cape Transport MEC Donald Grant and representatives of the SA National Taxi Organisation (Santaco), as well as a Taxi Task Team, met to address a dispute over leadership issues.

Drivers had agreed to mediation over how their new leadership structures would be elected.

During the strike, a Golden Arrow bus and a MyCiTi bus were torched. Roads in the city were also barricaded.

A pregnant commuter and another passenger were injured when a MyCiTi bus was stoned in Khayelitsha, said Brett Herron, a member of the city's mayoral committee for transport.

"One of the commuters was hit in the face by a flying rock and the pregnant commuter fell during the violent attack near the Kuyasa stop," said Herron.

Golden Arrow spokesperson Bronwen Dyke-Beyer said at least 50 people had been injured, primarily as a result of stones being thrown at them.

Read more on:    santaco  |  golden arrow  |  myciti  |  cape town  |  transport

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