Cops keep eye on hot spots

THE police were yesterday patrolling "hot spots" on the second day of a taxi strike in Cape Town, a spokesperson said.

THE police were yesterday patrolling "hot spots" on the second day of a taxi strike in Cape Town, a spokesperson said.

"Things are very quiet. The police remain on patrol in various hots pots," Inspector November Filander said.

On Tuesday four bus drivers were injured, none seriously, when their vehicles were stoned at Philippi, Nyanga, Ocean View and Kraaifontein. No arrests were made.

Western Cape transport MEC Robin Carlisle blamed the stonings on the Western Cape National Taxi Alliance, the body that called the strike.

"After having spent much of the weekend in negotiations with the [alliance] in an effort to avoid today's strike, I am furious that this body was involved in acts of violence and intimidation, including stoning buses," Carlisle said. "Accordingly, I have shelved all plans to assist the [alliance] with its concerns until such time as they give me a written declaration that no further violence will occur."

But alliance spokesperson Mvuyisi Mente said the taxi body was a nonviolent organisation and could not be blamed for the stonings.

"He [Carlisle] must not put the blame on us. We are working with him," Mente said.

The Cape Town strike follows protests in Joburg last week where police fired rubber bullets at striking minibus taxis. Both protests centred on the introduction of bus rapid transit systems in the cities. - Sapa

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