Cosatu members protest outside court

By Drum Digital
22 April 2013

Cosatu members protested on Monday outside the Nebo Magistrate's Court, in Limpopo, where three men were expected to appear for allegedly assaulting a shoplifter with a hammer.

Shop workers Gladys Maphanga, Refilwe Mzimba and Thabang Makuwa will appear on Monday for allegedly assaulting Ester Mankge with a belt and hammer for alleged shoplifting.

Their co-accused, Matthew Makofane and Maria Mahlaela, were granted bail of R500 each during a previous hearing.

"Cosatu [the Congress of SA Trade Unions] is saddened, aghast and angry by the video of assault on an elderly woman accused of stealing in Jane Furse Mall last October," said its provincial secretary Dan Sebabi.

"We therefore call on the magistrate's court in Nebo to give these men [and women] the harshest sentences to give a message that this country is tired about women abuse and is doing something to end it," he said

"The security guards had no right to violate the woman in such a horrific manner and to make her endure a prolonged beating where she was beaten with belts and a rubber hammer."

The union said the woman had endured a terrifying and humiliating ordeal which would leave her scarred for the rest of her life.

"Her basic human right was violated. The security guards took the law into their own hands.

"The law in South Africa states that you are innocent until proven guilty, irrespective of whether you were caught red-handed or not."

Sebabi said this call was the courts to make.

-Sapa

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