File Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)
File Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)

Ramaphosa appoints panel to probe July unrest

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Sep 18, 2021

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Cape Town - President Cyril Ramaphosa has approved the terms of reference of the expert panel that is probing the violence and security lapses in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng a few months ago.

Ramaphosa appointed Professor Sandy Africa to chair the panel and other members include former legal adviser to ex-President Thabo Mbeki Mojanku Gumbi and former co-ordinator for the National Intelligence Co-ordinating Committee, Silumko Sokupa.

The presidency announced on Friday that the panel will give its report to Ramaphosa within three months.

“It is critical that we have a thorough and independent assessment of the readiness and response of government to these devastating events. This analysis will inform the steps we must take to improve our law enforcement and security capabilities,” said Ramaphosa.

“All state entities are ready to provide the panel with any assistance, information and support that it needs,” added Ramaphosa.

The violence and looting in the two provinces led to the deaths of 359 people and cost the economy billions of rands.

Some of the major retail companies have said they were still trying to pick up the pieces in some of the areas that were destroyed in the violence.

Minister of Defence Thandi Modise recently said they should consider establishing an intermediary force that is between soldiers and police to quickly respond to incidents of this nature.

She said in France and other countries they have an intermediary force that is able to deal with riots.

The government was forced to deploy thousands of soldiers after the police could not contain the violence in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

However, after the situation subsided the government reduced the number of soldiers on the ground.

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