Protesters support vigilante taxi drivers outside KwaNobuhle court
Five “jikeleza” drivers charged with attempted murder
On Monday afternoon more than 100 people demonstrated outside the KwaNobuhle Magistrates’ Court in support of five informal taxi (jikeleza) drivers charged with attempted murder. They held up placards that read: “We are tired of hijackings” and “No more crime in our society”.
Protesters on busy Ponana Tini Road stopped other passing jikeleza drivers, inviting them to join the protest. They sang, “Amaphara azakunya” (Criminals will face the music), “Zizojik’ izinto (The tables will turn), and “Thina silwela amalungelo ethu” (We are fighting for our rights).
National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Luxolo Tyali said the drivers had assaulted two men after a car was stolen. “At this stage, we are only prosecuting for attempted murder. Charges are kidnapping, attempted murder and assault,” saidTyali.
Protester Nokuzola Mbewu, from ward 42 in KwaNobuhle, said: “When it’s time to get SASSA grants, the elderly citizens are always victims. The criminals are often loitering outside spaza shops and end up robbing the elderly people.”
“All we want to know is why are thieves not being arrested, but always those who beat them up are arrested?”
Newman “Rider” Simakuhle, leader of KwaNobuhle Jikeleza Association, which has 250 members, said their members are frequent victims of hijackings and robbery.
He said criminals posing as passengers often made off with cellphones and wallets of drivers and other passengers.
“We want the whole of South Africa to know that people who defend themselves are getting arrested and not the ones who rob us,” said Simakuhle.
Police spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu said Public Order Police were at the court but there were no incidents.
Many of the protesters, which included jikeleza owners and drivers and their passengers, were given a free ride to the demonstration and a free ride home (normal price is R15 one way).
The accused were granted bail of R500 each. They will appear again in court on 25 October.
Previous: In photos: The Brixton Light Festival
© 2023 GroundUp. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
You may republish this article, so long as you credit the authors and GroundUp, and do not change the text. Please include a link back to the original article.
We put an invisible pixel in the article so that we can count traffic to republishers. All analytics tools are solely on our servers. We do not give our logs to any third party. Logs are deleted after two weeks. We do not use any IP address identifying information except to count regional traffic. We are solely interested in counting hits, not tracking users. If you republish, please do not delete the invisible pixel.