Blind busker: cops punishedComment on this story
Cape Town -
The three law enforcement officers who forcibly removed blind busker Lunga Goodman Nono from his spot have been issued final warnings
and will be sent for training on how to handle people with disabilities.
In July Nono, 51, was forcibly removed from his usual spot in St George’s Mall by city law enforcement officers following a complaint from a nearby business.
The officers said Nono, who had been occupying the same spot since 2008, ignored repeated warnings that he had violated the city’s street musicians bylaw.
Video footage and pictures showed three officers dragging Nono on the ground after he refused to surrender his guitar, which was also broken during the scuffle.
The incident caused a public outcry. The city’s executive director for safety and security, Richard Bosman, said on Thursday that the disciplinary cases had been concluded.
“All three members were found guilty and given a final written warning that is valid for six months. They will also undergo sensitivity training in terms of handling people with disabilities,” Bosman said.
Nono has since returned to his spot while the city has repealed its outdated policy on street musicians and is formulating a new one. Nono was charged and appeared in court for violating the city’s bylaw, but the charges were later dropped.
He in turn filed a complaint of malicious damage to property against the officers.
In October, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) decided not to prosecute the officers.
To Nono’s disappointment, the NPA said the State would not be able to prove that the suspects “had a criminal mind” or that there was intent to cause malicious damage to property.