Minister Condemns Violence In Phoenix After Massacre
The Acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni has condemned the recent criminal activity in the Phoenix area of KwaZulu-Natal after 20 people were murdered during a criminal rampage.
Acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni has told residents of Phoenix in KwaZulu-Natal that they need to call the police when they find themselves in moments of distress instead of becoming vigilantes.
This comes after residents of Phoenix and Inanda were involved in alleged racially motivated confrontations. The Phoenix area is dominated by Indian race, while the Inanda is by Zulu people.
It is reported that the Phoenix residents say that they were protecting their livelihoods from the looting mobs. They say that they were under attack and had no other alternative but to protect themselves.
20 Zulu people in the area were killed leaving their families uncertain as to why this happened and wondering whether it was due to these residents being caught looting or in the possession of stolen goods.
A 13-year-old Indian boy is said to have been killed in the streets of Phoenix and one woman shot in the head. The community suspects that the killings were committed by the same mob who threatened to loot their businesses and burn their houses.
“Government condemned the attacks and vigilantism and urged communities who were protecting themselves to work together with community policing forum, the blue community, and the local South African Police Service. We encourage our citizens not to take the law into their own hands, but to wait for law enforcement to do their part," said Ntshavheni.
The number of people who died or were killed in the looting spree in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng has risen to 337. The violence and looting unrest began in KZN as a protest that demanded that the former President Jacob Zuma be released from prison, but then it got out of hand.
"5 additional people were arrested for the unrests related murders in KwaZulu-Natal and bringing the total arrests for the murders to 20. The 5 additional arrests are in connection to the murders in Phoenix.
There are no new updates on the arrests of the instigators and key role players in the unrests."-Acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni
There have been calls for a commission inquiry into the violence however Ntshavheni said that this would not be necessary because law enforcement authorities feel confident that they are aware of the facts and don't need a commission to reveal anything.
“The police and law enforcement agencies, in general, feel confident that they are fully aware of the facts at hand and they will be able to hold those accountable to be held liable,” said Ntshavheni.
A police officer in the North West has been reportedly dismissed from work for allegedly impregnating a prisoner. It is also alleged that the pregnant inmate was awaiting trial for murder and expected to be sentenced to 30 years in jail.
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