KZN taxi massacre: DA calls for increased intelligence within special task force
23 July 2018
The Democratic Alliance will today call on KZN Transport MEC, Mxolisi Kaunda, to increase intelligence capacity within the province’s special taxi violence task team following the massacre of eleven commuters travelling in a minibus taxi between Colenso and Weenen at the weekend.
The deceased, who were members of a Gauteng-based taxi association, were gunned down while returning home after attending the funeral of a colleague in KwaZulu-Natal.
The DA extends its sincere condolences to the families of the deceased. The perpetrators of this heinous crime must be brought to book and we welcome a commitment by law enforcement officials to making arrests within 72 hours.
It is clear though that government still cannot deal with the scourge of taxi violence. In 2016 MEC Kaunda announced the establishment of a special taxi violence task team in the province. This weekend’s incident raises serious questions around the unit’s capacity and whether the intelligence sphere is sufficiently staffed so that it is able to be proactive and prevent people from dying.
This weekend’s incident appears to be rooted in Gauteng, which also raises concerns around the level of cohesion and communication between the different anti-violence units within the country. Then there is the calibre of weapons used in this latest massacre, which are both military and paramilitary. The question is, where do they come from and how are they getting into the wrong hands? This is an issue that government must confront urgently.
The DA is committed to monitoring progress in terms of this investigation. We will also continue to monitor the efficacy of the taxi violence unit in the interests of ensuring a safe transport system for all road users.
Issued by Rafeek Shah, DA KZN Spokesperson on Transport, 23 July 2018