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Johannesburg - Those who undermine the law and attack police officers should not expect sympathy from the public, North West premier Thandi Modise said on Saturday.
“Those who choose to undermine law enforcement officers and attack police officers thinking that their actions will be justifiable in the light of criticism on police brutality should not expect any sympathy,” she said in a statement.
Modise was reacting to the shooting of a taxi driver and the stabbing of a police officer during an altercation in Klerksdorp on Saturday.
The taxi driver was allegedly asked to stop after committing a number of traffic offences in full view of the officer, who was on-duty in a marked car. The driver stopped the car and allegedly had a heated argument with the officer, which led to him taking out a knife and chasing after the officer. Police said the taxi driver got to the officer and stabbed him in the back.
The officer took out his firearm and shot a warning shot in the air but the driver did not retreat as he advanced to stab him again. The officer then allegedly shot the driver in the chest.
Police arrived on the scene shortly afterwards, and the two were taken to hospitals in the area.
Modise said the alleged actions of the taxi driver suggested that he could be “one of those who think that police should be immobilised into inaction against lawlessness.”
Modise said : “While we are opposed to police brutality, we are equally opposed to attacks on law enforcement officers by taxi drivers or any section of our communities.” - Sapa