DA welcomes suspension

By Drum Digital
01 March 2013

The DA welcomed on Friday the suspension of police officers allegedly involved in the death of a taxi driver.

"The DA also welcomes the suspension of the station commander responsible for the area," Democratic Alliance Gauteng MPL Kate Lorimer said in a statement.

National police commissioner Riah Phiyega said on Friday that eight officers were suspended and the Daveyton police station commander was removed following investigations into the incident.

"We are... outraged with what happened," Phiyega told reporters in Pretoria.

Mido Macia, 27, a taxi driver and Mozambican national, was tied to the back of a police van and dragged along the street in Daveyton, on the East Rand, on Tuesday.

An eyewitness filmed the assault. Macia died in the local police station's cells later that day.

Lorimer said Phiyega showed leadership by suspending the officers.

"Suspending the police officers pending the outcome of the various investigations is the only sensible thing to do, in support of upholding the law and protecting citizens from rogue cops like those involved."

Phiyega said that from video, which had gone viral, it was obvious Macia's rights were violated.

"The behaviour displayed in that video, when committed by police who are expected to serve and protect, is to be abhorred by all right-thinking people."

She had instructed that an internal investigation in terms of police disciplinary procedures be initiated immediately.

Phiyega urged all witnesses to come forward and co-operate with the investigation.

"The conduct of the members clearly goes against the values that the SAPS represent. All SAPS members are expected to respect and uphold the law at all times and avoid at all costs any conduct that makes us violators of the law," she said.

"The behaviour of the suspended members is therefore condemned in the strongest terms."

-Sapa

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