News24

Cops fire on Jub Jub protesters

2010-03-17 14:37

Johannesburg - Police fired rubber bullets at protesting school children outside the Protea Magistrate's Court on Wednesday where hip hop artist Jub Jub and his friend applied for bail on murder charges.

While most of the protesters had dispersed at the Soweto court by 14:00, some children, many in school uniform, started throwing rocks at police cars parked outside the building.

Rowdy students also jumped over perimeter walls of private houses in the street in front of the court.

Police officers lined up in the road and fired rubber bullets at the children, who then ran to the street corner.

In between the chaos, one man arrived with a bucket of water and soap and, unfazed by what was going on around him, started washing the cars that some protesters had jumped on.

Threats


Jub Jub, whose real name is Molemo Maarohanye, had been subjected to verbal abuse on Wednesday. When he and his co-accused Themba Tshabalala, arrived in a police van filled with prisoners, the prisoners were screaming: "Ayeye, Jub Jub, ayeye ['watch out' in isiZulu]."

Outside court, a protester told Sapa: "We will kill him today, but we are thinking of ways of how to kill him."

When asked how they planned to do that, protesters huddled together in groups and one replied: "We are talking about it. We will have an answer for you all soon."

A Congress of SA Students member used a loudspeaker to tell the crowd to calm down, saying otherwise Jub Jub would be too afraid to come out.

"Let him come out, let him come out. We will kill him," protesters shouted.

Those who had been locked out of the court building swore at police officers guarding the court.

When a police van moved, some protesters jumped onto it while others banged against the vehicle.

Pupils brandished sticks, branches and ANC flags.

In the morning protesters sang, "babulala abafowethu" [they killed our friends in isiZulu] and "Asibasabi siya bafuna" [we are not scared of them] and "Viva uyeza umkhonto" [the weapon is coming].

Bail application

Several lawyers covering other cases in the Protea Magistrate's Court on Wednesday were locked in due to the protests and could not leave the building.

Maarohanye and Tshabalala face murder charges after four school pupils were killed and two critically injured when the two crashed the Mini Coopers they were allegedly racing in Soweto, Johannesburg earlier this month.

They face four charges of murder, two of attempted murder and one each of reckless driving and drunken driving.

The State is opposing their bail application.

The court heard on Wednesday that both of were high on morphine and cocaine at the time of the accident.