One person has died following an attack during the ongoing taxi violence in Brits, in the North West.
At least five people were admitted to hospital on Thursday when they were caught in the violence, which also resulted in the damage of over 40 taxis.
In a statement, police are reporting that two groups began their violent spree on Thursday, 6 February 2020, at the taxi rank on Spoorweg Street, attacking taxis with iron rods, sticks and stones.
An unidentified male, who is estimated to be around 40-years-old, died in hospital while another male was admitted to the intensive care unit with serious head injuries.
Three of the victims were later released after receiving medical care.
Mr Cele can u pls come and solve this issue of taxi conflicts@brits. 1 declared dead,3 critically injured and more than 30 taxis damaged. pic.twitter.com/MyfL1OcADO— Hendrick (@HpHendrick) February 7, 2020
#sapsNW #SAPS monitoring #ProtestAction by Taxi Associations in Brits. Reports of roads being barricaded by taxis. SAPS maintaining presence to restore law and order. #PoliceVisibility ME pic.twitter.com/pq44pIgpdo— SA Police Service (@SAPoliceService) January 29, 2020
Eleven suspects, between the ages of 16 and 60, have been arrested and are expected to appear in the Brits Magistrates Court on Monday on charges of public violence.
Police are also investigating cases of murder, attempted murder, malicious damage to property and possession of dangerous weapons.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Sello Kwena has urged all taxi associations in and around Brits to address their challenges through peaceful conduct and negotiations.
Last month, traffic on the N4 between Brits and Hartbeespoort was disrupted after the road was barricaded with taxis that had been abandoned.
The protest took place after a letter purported to have been from the Segwaelane, Wonderkop and Majakaneng Taxi Association called on local taxi operators to shut the small town down over the apparent conflict between local operators and a new association apparently originating in Gauteng.