Cape Town - The City of Cape Town has told Parliament that the Clifton Beach incident, which gave rise to protests during 2018 festive season was in no way racial, but racialised and politicised by the media.
The City appeared before Parliament’s portfolio committee on Environmental Affairs, which held an inquiry into the events of 23rd December 2018, at Cape Town’s Clifton Beach.
On that day, members of the public were allegedly removed from the beach by private security officers, from the Professional Protection Alternatives (PPA).
City of Cape Town’s mayco member for community services Zahid Badroodien said: “Legitimate cases of racism must always be addressed, but what happened on the 23rd of December was not a race-related incident. Further to this effect, is to explain the happenings which happened prior to the 23rd.
“Mayor (Dan Plato) found that people of all races, including black, white and coloured, not a particular race as it was being claimed, were all asked and not forcefully removed as alleged, to leave the beach on the 23rd of December by a private security company,” said Badroodien.
He blamed the uproar that accompanied the incident on the “media’s appetite to sensationalise any word of racism for front page story is what brought us today”.
The incidents were followed by a series of protest rallies at the beach, which one saw a sheep being slaughtered.
At the time of the incident, there were reports that the PPA had intervened after an alleged rape on the beach.
However, members of the SAPS in the Western Cape told Parliament that it had not received any complaint, or had a case opened at any of its police stations, for such a matter.
The Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA) says it has suspended about three security officers, who were involved in the Clifton Beach incident last year December.
PSIRA Director Manabela Chauke said: “Beachgoers were removed from Clifton Beach by the Professional Protection Alternatives (PPA). PSIRA received four complaints, and those complaints were mainly about the conduct of the PPA staff.
"We have charges served for violation of the code of conduct on 3 security officers, Director of the PPA and PPA as a legal entity,” said Chauke.
He said allegations of assault, unauthorised restraints, use of abusive language.
PSIRA commenced its investigation into the matter on 27 December 2018.