British doctor, 40, shot dead in South Africa riot after taking wrong turn out of airport

9 August 2023, 13:59

A British doctor, 40, was shot dead amid violence in Cape Town
A British doctor, 40, was shot dead amid violence in Cape Town. Picture: Getty

By Will Taylor

A British doctor has been killed after he took a wrong turn from Cape Town airport and ended up in a riot.

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The unnamed tourist, 40, was with two members of his family when he was shot dead during disorder in Nyanga.

He is one of five people killed during violence at the township, which is just outside Cape Town International Airport.

Tensions boiled over during a minibus taxi driver strike, which began with a week-long shutdown on Thursday.

Lirandzu Themba, a spokeswoman for South Africa's police ministry, said: "The 40-year-old doctor was driving with two other persons in the vehicle.

"From the airport he apparently took a wrong turn off on Thursday evening and headed towards Nyanga.

Read more: Group trapped in Cardiff car crash that killed three 'had been drinking and inhaling laughing gas'

The Brit was killed amid a taxi strike
The Brit was killed amid a taxi strike. Picture: Getty
Firefighters had to put out torched buses
Firefighters had to put out torched buses. Picture: Getty

"In Ntlangano Crescent a number of suspects approached his vehicle, shot and killed him. No arrests yet."

The labour dispute broke out after local authorities were given the power to impound vehicles if workers breached rules like driving without a licence.

Violence erupted when Cape Town authorities started impounding vehicles, and protesters responded by bombarding the police with stones and setting cars and buses on fire.

Read more: Heartbroken family posts photo of smiling boy, 7, who leapt into toxic powder unaware it was deadly and died minutes after

Cape Town descended into violence amid a taxi strike
Cape Town descended into violence amid a taxi strike. Picture: Getty

The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) began the strike on Thursday. The unnamed British national was killed on the same day.

A total of 120 people were arrested for crimes including public violence, damage to property and looting by Tuesday.

The strike has shut down public transport throughout the city in the south west of the country.

It is unclear if that led to the doctor taking a wrong turn.

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