The Department of Transport has called on all operators in the public transport industry to desist from any acts of violence and intimidation.
Addressing the media on Friday in Centurion, departmental spokesperson Ishmael Mnisi condemned the violence that resulted in the alleged murder of Taxify driver Siyabonga Langelihle Ngcobo.
The young Tshwane University of Technology student’s body was found in the boot of a burnt Taxify vehicle on Thursday near the University of South Africa’s Sunnyside campus in Pretoria.
Officials from the department visited the Ngcobo family in Centurion to offer government’s condolences and support.
Mnisi said the department’s door was open for engagement on any concerns operators in the public transport industry might have.
“We will not watch on the peripheral whilst people are fighting amongst each other without engaging the department. We will try all avenues to communicate to the affected parties and tell them how far the process of legislation is,” Mnisi said.
The National Land Transport Amendment Bill, which is aimed at recognising the e-hailing services, is currently before Parliament.
“We are not happy with the continued violence because it is robbing families of their loved ones and hence the message from the Minister of condemnation of violence,” Mnisi said.
Department of Transport Acting Director General Mathabatha Mokonyama said the department will not tolerate lawlessness.
“We expect law enforcement do their work to ensure that violence does not happen and that users of public transport are safe.
“I sympathise with those who lost their lives, we will not treat anyone else who embarks on lawlessness with kid gloves. Anyone who perpetuates violence will be dealt with harshly,” Mokonyama said.
Last year, he said, the department had engagements with the metered taxis and e-hailing taxi operators where it was agreed that there will be no violence.