Spike in crime due to gang, taxi vi­o­lence

The Mercury - - METRO -

WHILE a num­ber of mo­tives are be­hind the 57 mur­ders com­mit­ted in South Africa ev­ery day, an anal­y­sis of the re­cent crime statistics shows taxi-re­lated con­flicts, gang-re­lated ac­tiv­ity and mob jus­tice con­tribut­ing more to the in­creas­ing trend.

The crime statistics from April 1 last year to March 31 this year, re­leased yes­ter­day, showed there were 237 taxi-re­lated killings in the coun­try, with KwaZulu-Natal hav­ing 36, the fourth-high­est num­ber of in­ci­dents.

Gaut­eng had the high­est of 110, fol­lowed by 45 in the West­ern Cape and 39 in the East­ern Cape.

The statistics come as an oThon­gathi taxi as­so­ci­a­tion deputy chair­per­son was shot dead on Mon­day night.

Nico Mkhize, who was the deputy chair­man of Qalokuhle Taxi As­so­ci­a­tion, was killed out­side Nan­dos.

Trans­port and Com­mu­nity Safety and Li­ai­son MEC Mx­olisi Kaunda said the mo­tive be­hind Mkhize’s mur­der was un­known as oThon­gathi had no ten­sion within the taxi op­er­a­tions.

“We ap­peal to mem­bers of the com­mu­nity who may have seen the in­ci­dent to come for­ward with any in­for­ma­tion,” said Kaunda.

The statistics also showed that there were 973 gang-re­lated mur­ders, with the ma­jor­ity of these (808) oc­cur­ring in the West­ern Cape.

With com­mu­ni­ties tak­ing the law into their own hands, 849 people were killed in cases po­lice clas­sify as mob jus­tice: 264 of them in Gaut­eng; 173 in the West­ern Cape; 145 in KZN; 95 in Lim­popo; 83 in Mpumalanga and 72 in the East­ern Cape.

Po­lit­i­cally-mo­ti­vated mur­ders to­talled 32, with most of them (30) in KZN.

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