Eskom has suspended some major services in parts of Cape Town affected by ongoing taxi violence.
In a statement on Tuesday, the power utility said the ongoing taxi violence in Cape Town posed a significant threat to the safety of Eskom staff travelling in vehicles that resemble taxis, especially in the affected areas.
“The Eskom specialised maintenance and support teams who travel in white minibuses that resemble taxis are at risk, and we would not want them to be mistaken for taxis and potentially be targeted,” the statement read.
“As a result, all the Eskom white minibuses that resemble taxis have been grounded. The grounding of these vehicles limits Eskom’s ability to provide major services in the affected areas.”
Major public transport routes in Cape Town have been affected by attacks on taxis.
Talks to resolve loading rights disputes between the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) and the Congress of Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta) started on Friday, with shootings directed at taxis continuing.
The affected areas include Khayelitsha, Nyanga, Langa, Bellville, Wynberg, Vrygrond, Fish Hoek, Masiphumelele, Athlone and Mitchells Plain.
Eskom said it will continue attending to faults not affected by the grounding of its minibus vehicles.
“Eskom will conduct frequent security risk assessments and provide security to teams attending to other faults in all high-risk areas. Eskom is working closely with the authorities and Eskom Security Services to ensure the safety of its staff while working in these areas.
“Unfortunately, there will be a significant delay in restoration efforts of technical teams out in the field, meaning customers may experience [prolonged periods] without electricity,” it said.