Man ‘forced to eat faeces by cops’ still waiting for justice

2013-01-23 08:27

A Nigerian national who was allegedly brutally assaulted by Mpumalanga police and forced to eat his own faeces is still waiting for justice to be done 12 months after he had laid charges.

Two cops, who were charged for assaulting hair salon owner Ahmed Saidi (42) of Middelburg, and stealing R5 400 from him, were never prosecuted. They were also not put through a disciplinary process for misconduct.

City Press has the names of the warrant officers but they cannot be named as they have not appeared in court.

Investigating officer Constable Jabu Mhlanga claims prosecutor Ansie Venter did not put the case on the court roll and did not give reasons for doing so after she obtained all statements and charged the policemen. One was charged for assault and the other for theft.

The cop accused of assaulting Saidi has since been dismissed for a different offence.

“This case has put me off, because I thought that I did everything but it was not put on the roll. I did my part and if there were outstanding issues, [Venter] should have given me instructions to investigate further,” Mhlanga said.

“It’s true that [Saidi] doesn’t know what is happening,” she added.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Medupi Simasiku, however, blamed Mhlanga.

“That matter is actually on the roll and will be in court on February 22. The investigating officer has always been asking for a postponement,” Simasiku said.

Mhlanga responded: “That’s a lie. If that was the case, the next court date would be on the docket.”

Six police officers raided Saidi’s house in search of drugs on the night of January 21 last year, but found nothing after ransacking every room.

Saidi said instead of giving his complaint attention, the police arrested him three months later together with his eight-month pregnant wife and five other friends on another charge of possession of drugs.

Again, no drugs were found with them.

This case will go to court on January 29, and they are all out on R1?000 bail each.

Saidi said the justice system was letting him down.

“I heard nothing about my case going to court or any update. As for the [April case], I’ve no stress, because the police will have to show the drugs to the court,” he said.

“I’ll never forget what police did to me until I die. Beating me was another issue, but making me eat [my faeces] ... even a dog can’t be treated like that,” he said.

According to Saidi’s affidavit, the warrant officer kicked him repeatedly in his stomach and testicles, and also strangled him. Saidi wet and soiled himself, and lost consciousness.

“The other policemen left the bedroom one by one. He told me to wipe the faeces with my hands and eat them. He was standing next to me with a belt in his hand,” said Saidi.

After swallowing his faeces, the cop called his colleagues who looked and laughed at him.

Saidi showered and changed his clothes. It was then he was told the reasons why he was assaulted.

The police allegedly said they found a man stealing and he told them that he wanted to raise R2?000 to pay Saidi for drugs. That man allegedly said Saidi was threatening him and had taken his grinder, earrings and a necklace.

Saidi added after the incident many policemen visited him to apologise on behalf of his tormentor, and an offer of R25?400 in compensation, which included the stolen money, was proposed to his lawyer.

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