27 November 2012

Namibia: Taxi Robberies Increase

AT LEAST four armed robberies involving taxis took place in Windhoek over the past week.

Last Monday, at about 21h15, near the FNB Centre in Windhoek West, a passenger threatened a taxi driver with a knife, pushed him out of the car and drove off with his Toyota Corolla, Chief Inspector Barry de Klerk said on Sunday.

Two days later, in the same vicinity, a taxi driver was threatened by two passengers with knives. After taking his wallet and cellphone, they forced him out of the car and drove off. The incident took place at about 20h00, De Klerk said.

On Thursday morning at about 02h50, a taxi driver picked up two passengers in Katutura. After a while, the driver was told to stop, after which one of the passengers pulled out a pistol, forced the driver out and drove off with the vehicle.

Only two of these vehicles were recovered, De Klerk said.

On Friday, between 21h30 and 22h00, a taxi driver was stopped in Okavango Street in Eros. The passenger then pulled out a knife and demanded money from the taxi driver.

According to De Klerk, a struggle ensued during which the taxi driver shot at the alleged assailant. He was hit in the chest. The seriously injured man is being treated in the Intensive Care Unit of the Windhoek Central Hospital.

De Klerk said the police are establishing whether the man is linked to other robberies involving taxis.

Deputy Commissioner Silvanus Nghishidimbwa yesterday said that the police were waiting for the man’s condition to improve before questioning him about the taxi robberies.

According to him, the man was linked to other robberies in the past.

The taxi driver was not arrested but a case of attempted murder and one of attempted armed robbery are being investigated, De Klerk said on Sunday.

In another development, a 12-year-old boy died on Tuesday after he was hit by a truck in Katutura. De Klerk said the boy was carrying a canister of petrol, which caught fire upon impact.

Meanwhile, Nghishidimbwa yesterday said that one suspect was arrested in connection with an armed robbery at the Puma service station in Bach Street last week.

An unknown number of suspects stole approximately N$100 000 during the robbery.

Nghishidimbwa said the police were still looking for four suspects linked to the incident.

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