Fri. Jan 22nd, 2021

Durban protests: Taxi drivers accuse Metro police of unfair targeting

durban protestsTaxi drivers are in talks with the provincial department of transport about a way forward.

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The Durban protests have died down since things escalated near Umgeni Road, just outside the city’s central bowl district on Tuesday morning.

Scores of protesters were seen barricading roads with burning tyres and rubble.

As reported by IOL News, authorities have managed to de-escalate the situation, bringing calm to the streets near the taxi rank, where it’s believed the protests broke out.

What caused the Durban protests?

Protesters blockaded the roads going into the Durban train station, as well as Stamford Hill Road, with burning tyres, calling on the Metro police to stop targeting them unfairly

Durban Metro police spokesperson, Parboo Sewpersad, noted that the dispute was between the Long Distance taxi association and the provincial department of transport.

“The crowd has gathered on First Avenue at the entrance to the taxi rank. A meeting with officials is underway. There is a full compliment of police to stabilise the situation. There have been no arrests made this morning. The roads are opened to traffic,” the spokesperson revealed.

Sewpersad also confirmed that authorities were looking into claims of theft and robbery after motorists and commuters cried that vagrants who disguised themselves as protesters, had allegedly looted their cars.

Santaco distances itself from protests

The South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) distanced itself from the protests, stating that it was not part of it in any shape or form.

Traffic has been relieved since things calmed down in the city’s CBD. The conclusion of the meeting between the taxi association and the department of transport will determine whether or not the protest will continue.

Commuters have been advised to make alternative arrangements for transport, in case parties in the meeting do not reach a consensus.

Watch: Protesters burn tyres and barricade roads in Durban

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