British doctor is murdered in Cape Town after taking a wrong turn at airport and getting caught up in violent strike by cab drivers
- Tourist was with two family members when he drove into township of Nyanga
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A British doctor has been murdered in Cape Town after taking the wrong turn from the airport and getting caught up in a wave of of violent strikes by taxi drivers.
The tourist was with two family members when he drove into Nyanga, a huge township close to Cape Town International Airport.
‘The 40-year-old doctor was driving with two other persons in the vehicle. From the airport he apparently took a wrong turn off on Thursday evening and headed towards Nyanga,’ Lirandzu Themba, the spokeswoman for the police minister, said.
‘In Ntlangano Crescent a number of suspects approached his vehicle, shot and killed him. No arrests yet.’
Violence has erupted across Cape Town for days in response to police impounding illegal vehicles.
The death comes amid violence across Cape Town in response to police impounding illegal vehicles. Pictured: A resident of Masiphumelele use a board as a shield during clashes
Angry protesters linked to the powerful private taxi industry have pelted stones at buses and cars and set fire to some.
The N2 motorway between the city and the airport has been a target of fury, with gangs attempting to barricade the road.
The violence is putting Cape Town’s reputation as a popular tourist destination on the line, South Africa’s rental vehicle body has warned.
The Southern African Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association condemned the violence, with its manager saying ‘peaceful dialogue and negotiation is vital to finding a resolution.’
The warning from Sandile Ntseoane came today as news of the British tourist’s death emerged.
He was murdered last Thursday evening, which saw the start of a one-week shutdown announced by the largest organisation of taxi owners.
The group are angered at what they call heavy-handed tactics by police and city authorities in impounding some of their vehicles.
The taxis’ national union has said its members aren’t instigating the violence and others are using the strike as an excuse to launch their own protests.
The foreign office last week issued a travel alert about the unrest and today/weds. It said it was ‘supporting the family of a British man who has died in South Africa’.
A protester blocks the streets with stones and rubble during an ongoing strike by taxi operators against traffic authorities
A law enforcement officer fires rubber bullets during their clashes with protesters in Masiphumelele amidst an ongoing strike by taxi operators
Nyanga is one of the most dangerous places in South Africa where 74 people are murdered every day.
Western Cape province, which includes Cape Town, has taken a tough stance on the unregulated minibus taxi industry known for bad driving and dangerous vehicles. Millions of workers and school children have been forced to stay at home. Deliveries of food has been interrupted.
Geordin Hill-Lewis, Cape Town’s mayor, said he would stand firm against the sector.
‘In Cape Town, violence will never be tolerated as a negotiating tactic. We reiterate our call on SANTACO [the taxi union] to return peacefully to the negotiation table,’ he said.