Death toll rises amid riots and looting in KZN, GP
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DURBAN - FROM a matric pupil to the elderly, more than 30 people have been killed during the ongoing protests and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
On Tuesday morning, KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala said 26 people were killed in the province and this included people who died during stampedes when looting was taking place.
Zikalala also said 187 people had been arrested in the province.
In a statement, the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NatJOINTS) said as of 8pm, 489 people were arrested, 166 from KZN and 323 from Gauteng.
“The NatJOINTS has intensified deployments in all the affected areas in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng and these will be augmented by the SAPS’s measures being put in place to call up operational members from leave and rest-days to increase the presence of law enforcement personnel on the ground.”
In Gauteng, the number of deaths as a result of violent protests increased from four to 10.
NatJOINTS added that four police officers who were injured while responding to the violent protests were recovering well.
Some of the deaths were reported in neighbouring areas in Durban.
It is alleged that those killed between Sunday night and on Monday morning were shot by police officers or private security companies. However, this could not be verified. Police were investigating.
According to reports, a matric pupil was shot dead, allegedly by police, at a protest in Richards Bay, northern KZN, on Monday.
In Gauteng, a woman was shot dead while she was looting in Katlehong Mall while an elderly man was shot dead during the unrest.
Two unidentified bodies were found burnt beyond recognition in a gutted Ithala Centre in uMlazi, south of Durban, on Monday morning.
The bodies were believed to be that of looters who could not escape when the building was set alight.
A man was shot dead in Inanda, north of Durban, outside a supermarket.
Another man was shot dead while alcohol was being looted from a nearby liquor store in Umbilo, near the Durban city centre.
There was also a video of a man lying dead next to a vehicle believed to be his car.
On Monday national police spokesperson Colonel Brenda Muridili said Gauteng police were investigating the circumstances surrounding the deaths of four people since the outbreak of violent protests in Gauteng.
Muridili said: “On Sunday morning the police responded to a call from Alexandra Clinic where they found a body with gunshot wounds.
“Later that day the body of a security guard with assault wounds was found at Jeppestown.
“The third body was discovered, also on Sunday, in the evening in Dobsonville while the fourth body was discovered with gunshot wounds in Germiston. The cause of death of the security guard, as well as the body found in Dobsonville, are part of investigations.
“In KwaZulu-Natal there is a report of two people who have been killed, one in Inanda and the second one in Umbilo.
“The circumstances leading to their deaths are under investigation.”
Meanwhile, following a rumour that former first lady Sizakele MaKhumalo Zuma had died following Jacob Zuma’s imprisonment, the Jacob Zuma Foundation said it had checked with the family and confirmed that it was fake news.