Cops deny firing bullets at protesters

2012-06-27 09:05
Police. (File, AP)

Police. (File, AP)

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Durban - Police in KwaZulu-Natal denied on Wednesday that they had shot three unarmed people with live ammunition in Umlazi.

"No individual was shot last night. It's all lies," said Lieutenant Colonel Vincent Mdunge.

"It is a matter to solely discredit the police. These are hooligans who want to take over the streets of Umlazi and we can't allow that."

On Wednesday morning, Unemployed People's Movement spokesperson Bheki Buthelezi claimed police had shot at unarmed protesters who were trying to occupy the office of a ward councillor in Umlazi.

Protest

"One of the people who was shot has been found in a hospital, but the condition and whereabouts of the other two is not clear at the moment," Buthelezi said.

"The police in Durban have a record of using live ammunition against unarmed protesters, of using torture against activists and of trying to fabricate cases against activists."

Buthelezi said the organisation was concerned about the safety of activists and that the situation could get worse.

However, Mdunge said similar incidents had been reported in the last week while road construction was happening on the Mangosuthu Highway in Umlazi.

"There is no truth in it... Local community members are demanding that all of them should be employed and that is impossible," he said.

"They resorted to burning tyres and throwing stones on the one available lane going in and coming out of Umlazi. As the police, we can't allow that. We cleared the highway and no shots were fired."

Mdunge said police would continue to monitor the situation.

- SAPA
Read more on:    police  |  durban  |  police brutality  |  protests
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