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KZN men accused of violence get bail

2012-02-28 18:16

Durban - Seventeen men accused of public violence were granted R500 bail each by the Umlazi Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, police said.

"All 17 were granted bail of R500 and the case was postponed to April 2 for further investigation," said Colonel Jay Naicker.

They were arrested after violence broke out between National Freedom Party and Inkatha Freedom Party supporters at Umlazi's T-Section at the weekend.

Two people died in the violence - Nicholas Ngcobo was shot dead and Margaret Mthethwa had a heart attack when she saw her neighbour's house torched.

It was reported that scores of cars and houses were damaged during the clashes.

Naicker said the men faced public violence charges, malicious damage to property, theft and arson.

"As investigations are continuing, more charges could be added to the charge sheet," he said.

More arrests were also expected to be made.

Political leaders, including NFP leader Zanele Magwaza-Msibi, IFP president Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the Democratic Alliance's Sizwe Mchunu and African National Congress provincial chairperson Dr Zweli Mkhize condemned the violence.

Buthelezi and Magwaza-Msibi visited the area.

The Mercury newspaper reported on Tuesday that the violence started a fortnight ago after NFP supporter Thandeka Cele was assaulted by a man for wearing trousers.

When the man was arrested, his friends organised a march in protest, which sparked violence between IFP and NFP supporters.

The T-section is known as an IFP stronghold.

Ethekwini Municipality mayor James Nxumalo visited the T-Section on Tuesday.

Nxumalo said the municipality would approach the department of housing to see if houses could be organised for people who had lost their homes.