Shock to taxi industry as ‘iron lady’ slain

Charmaine Bailey, 56, was shot and killed in Wynberg on Thursday May 4. Picture: Facebook

The taxi fraternity is reeling following the death of Wynberg/Hout Bay Taxi Association chairwoman Charmaine Bailey, 56, who was shot and killed in Wynberg last week.

Police confirmed Ms Bailey was shot by unknown gunmen in Maynard Road, on Thursday May 4, at about 1.50pm, when she attended a meeting in the area.

Provincial police spokesman Sergeant Wesley Twigg said the circumstances surrounding the shooting were under investigation and according to reports, Ms Bailey was at a meeting and while talking to someone, a gunshot went off and she sustained a gunshot wound to the body and was declared dead by medical personnel on the scene.

“The unknown suspects fled the scene and are yet to be arrested. The motive for the attack is yet to be determined,” he said.

Although the motive for the killing has not yet been determined, sources close to Ms Bailey, who was the training officer for the Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) regional taxi council, believe it was a hit.

Ms Bailey, who grew up in Lavender Hill, was well known in the community and her family said she played a role in growing the taxi associations, was passionate to see positive change in the industry and was always willing to help where she could to bring warring parties to sit around the same table.

Cata spokesman Nkululeko Sityebi, who worked closely with Ms Bailey, said her death was a huge loss to the industry and they were putting a lot of effort into helping police determine what could have led to her death.

The association had been in meetings since Friday May 5 to gather information about the meeting Ms Bailey attended as well as the issues that were discussed.

“We are trying to ascertain what led to the assassination through our own internal investigations because we need to find out if this is a taxi association issue or if it was outside forces who are responsible. There are many factors and we need to find out if the taxi association or its leadership are under attack,” he said.

Mr Sityebi said Ms Bailey, whom he dubbed “the iron lady”, had been instrumental in bringing about positive change. “We were working on future projects and training to better the industry and I will miss working alongside her. We hope those responsible will be arrested.”

Anyone with information about the shooting incident can contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111.