Cop killing sees Diepsloot residents take their anger out on foreign nationals
Johannesburg - Diepsloot residents stormed the police station on Thursday morning demanding officers hand over the man accused of killing a cop last week.
Detective Captain Oupa Matjie was fatally shot while in pursuit of suspects last week in the area. A man has been arrested for the officer's murder and was due in the Randburg Magistrate's court on Thursday.
According to police spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters, the residents demanded the man be released and handed over to the community. When this didn’t happen, a protest erupted and they burned tyres in the middle of main roads and turned on foreign nationals.
"Fed up" residents in #Diepsloot decided to take it to the streets in the early hours today over "killings of South Africans in the community by foreign nationals". #DiepslootProtest @TheStar_news@ReporterStar— MoYet (@yethudlamini) January 23, 2020
Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela urged the community to be mindful of the law and due processes.
“The arrest of the suspect who allegedly shot and killed Captain Matjie, came after collaboration between the community and the police,” said Mawela.
Shopping malls and schools are disrupted. While some protestors barricade roads with burning tyres, cow skulls, carts, beds, furnitures, some are rushing to schools to fetch their children. Bushes nearby the community were also set alight.— MoYet (@yethudlamini) January 23, 2020
He added that it was therefore important that the suspect's appearance before court be secured.
“It should not be jeopardised in any manner, so that the suspect faces the full might of the law,” Mawela said.
“Public Order Police have since the early hours of this morning, been on high-alert monitoring the situation and dispersing groups who had barricaded some main routes in the area, including the William Nicol and the R551 roads,” Peters said.
However, the protest that started as "fight for justice" has turned violent with protestors looting shops. Police rushed to the looting scenes and started shooting rubber bullets leaving one resident bleeding and unattended. #DiepslootProtest #Diepsloot @ReporterStar— MoYet (@yethudlamini) January 23, 2020
Joburg Metro Police Department spokesperson Wayne Minnaar said motorists were being diverted away from R511 between N1 and N14.
“There's no access to Diepsloot from William Nicol Drive or the N14. Protesters have placed rocks and burning tyres on R511 and Nkonyama Drive.”
“The roads will remain closed because it is not safe to use,” Minnaar said.
On social media, users reacted to the violence by calling on the government to enforce tighter border controls.
If y'all want this illegal foreigners problem to be solved vote for @HermanMashaba he is the only person who takes our cry serious when it comes to foreigners. @MYANC won't do anything, worse @EFFSouthAfrica wants to open borders. #Diepsloot— Mimi_AfricanQueen (@Mimi72581765) January 23, 2020
Until the govt sorts out our open and porous borders, situations like the one on Diepsloot will keep flaring up..— BlackLivesMatter🇿🇦 (@MzilikaziGirl) January 23, 2020
The sad thing is poor Black South Africans have legitimate concerns about illegal foreigners.
But their concerns will be swept aside, because "xenophobia*🙄