We Are More"" grabbed the mask from Mortlock's face, snapping it back onto her face after he said he does not talk to people wearing masks. A charge was laid and Peiser was arrested on the beach. A small group of demonstraters. Photographer - Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)
We Are More"" grabbed the mask from Mortlock's face, snapping it back onto her face after he said he does not talk to people wearing masks. A charge was laid and Peiser was arrested on the beach. A small group of demonstraters. Photographer - Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Fish Hoek beach protest organiser arrested after grabbing journalist’s mask

By Se-Anne Rall Time of article published Feb 6, 2021

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DURBAN – ONE of the organisers of this morning’s ((Saturday)) protest at Fish Hoek Beach has been arrested after he allegedly assaulted an eNCA journalist covering the event.

Leader of the movement, We Are More or WAM, Craig Peiser, allegedly grabbed reporter Monique Mortlock's face mask after he claimed that he could not hear her speak.

Taking to Twitter to recount what had transpired, Mortlock said she and a cameraman had been covering the protest when Peiser asked if they were from the media.

“He said he could not hear me and I spoke louder. He then said to me he does not speak to people who wear masks. We told him it was the law and he pulled my mask from my face, rips it off. I was completely shocked,” she said.

The incident happened in full view of police, other protesters and residents who were at the beach.

The movement has since issued a statement on the matter.

“Woke Nation and it's affiliate organisations categorically condemns such behaviour and wants to inform everyone that such actions go against the principles of what we stand for and only hamper what we intend to achieve from such demonstrations. We were not aware that this had happened as we were only there to consult and support Craig and the members of WAM,” Clay Wilson said.

He said while they condemned his behaviour, they supported his cause.

“There are many good people of WAM and will continue to be. We are still trying to get clarification on why Craig acted the way he did and have no further comment regarding this matter until we are able to get to the bottom of this. Until then we as a collective would like to extend our sincerest apologies to Monique from eNCA who was both professional and kind,” Wilson said.

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