Outrage over assault of theft accused

2013-04-17 08:38

Government is outraged over the assault of a woman in Jane Furse, Limpopo, according to spokesperson Phumla Williams.

“This is a criminal activity and we call on law enforcement agencies to investigate, arrest and prosecute those that are involved in this heinous crime,” she said in a statement.

Two of five people accused of assaulting the woman and filming it were granted bail by the Nebo Magistrates’ Court.

Matthew Makofane, Maria Mahlaela, Gladys Maphanga, Refilwe Mzimba and Thabang Makuwa appeared in court on Monday, Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said.

The group, all employees at a clothing shop in Jane Furse, allegedly assaulted 49-year-old Ester Mankge after accusing her of stealing a packet of underwear.

Makofane and Mahlaela received R500 bail each. Maphanga, Mzimba and Makuwa would remain in custody because of previous assault allegations.

Two men in the group allegedly beat the woman with various objects while filming it. National daily tabloid, the Daily Sun, uploaded the video to their YouTube account yesterday.

“The incident happened in October last year but the woman never opened a case until someone notified the police of the video,” Mulaudzi said.

A case was opened on April 8. All five were arrested last week.

Williams urged the public to refrain from spreading the video clip.

“These acts perpetuate immorality and work against building a society where there is respect for human life and dignity,” she said.

“South Africa is a democratic country with a Constitution that protects the rights of all that live in it.”

The ANC Women’s League in Limpopo also condemned the incident.

“The owner of the shop and security guards are counter-revolutionaries and we call all women and men to boycott the shop since this crime happened inside the shop,” it said in a statement.

“The shop owner has failed dismally to guarantee gogo (grandmother) her women’s rights to (a) life free from violence, allowing gogo to endure continued violence which could end in her death.”

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