Western Cape Transport MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela on Sunday warned warring taxi associations operating from the Bellville taxi rank that if they could not make peace, they would be shut down.
Madikizela met with representatives from two groups, Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) and Cape Organisation for the Democratic Taxi Association (Codeta) following a spate of taxi-related murders.
In recent months, there has been a surge in violence linked to competition over routes.
Madikizela said that he had called for mediation talks between Codeta and Cata in an attempt to quell tensions and address the underlying cause of the violence.
According to the MEC, there were 56 taxi-related murders and 32 attempted murders since the start of the year.
The most recent incident occurred at the Bellville taxi rank in August and resulted in three commuters being wounded after being caught in the crossfire.
The taxi rank was then closed by police as a precautionary measure, but Madikizela said that it remained operational.
“I will not hesitate to take the drastic measure to close these routes if the killings do not stop immediately,” he said.
A list of resolutions have since been put on the table by both taxi associations and the Transport Department to prevent any more violence. They include an agreement to end illegal operations on any routes or at any ranks.
“We will be making a joint statement in due course to communicate with the public on how we are going to resolve these matters,” Madikizela said.
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