SAHRC to probe protest deaths

2014-01-16 20:30
SAHRC (Picture: Sapa)

SAHRC (Picture: Sapa)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - The SAHRC will investigate the deaths of three people in Mothutlung, near Brits in North West, following violent protests about water shortages, it said on Thursday.

"The SA Human Rights Commission [SAHRC] has decided to launch an own initiative investigation into the causes of the protest in relation to the provision of water," spokesperson Isaac Mangena said in a statement.

On Monday, mineworker Osia Rahube and a photographer known as Bra Mike were shot dead during a protest, allegedly by police.

On Tuesday Lerato Seema died after jumping from a moving police Nyala. Police said he was trying to escape from custody. Residents claimed police brutality.

The area has been without water for at least three months.

Mangena said the SAHRC had met the Madibeng local municipality and community representatives.

It had noted residents' concerns and would follow up on the promises made by the municipality, which included restoring the water supply.

"The SAHRC condemns the situation in Mothutlung, particularly the unnecessary deaths of three people."

Mangena said the SAHRC welcomed the investigation by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID). It hoped IPID would establish the causes of the deaths and ensure that those responsible were brought to book.

"It is disappointing that the [SA Police Service] top management seems not to have heeded the recommendations of the SAHRC following its investigation into the death of Ficksburg activist Andries Tatane in 2012 during a similar service delivery protest relating to water shortages," he said.

Police brutality

In its report on Tatane, the SAHRC found the police had used a disproportionate amount of force and that officers had not been properly equipped and trained to deal with the riot.

It recommended, among other things, that the police improve training to ensure protests were peaceful, and that a training manual for the public riot unit be developed.

"The SAHRC was willing to help the SAPS in this regard. It was also recommended that the SAPS actively engage in communication with communities where there are popular protests like in Mothutlung," he said.

Mangena said the deaths in Mothutlung could have been avoided had the police implemented some of the recommendations.

"It is also worth noting that, a few weeks ago, the SAHRC issued a report on the failure of the Madibeng local municipality, which also covers Mothutlung, to deliver water services to the people."

The report followed a complaint received in March from residents of Klipgat C, who said they had been without water for five weeks, and that the municipality had failed to address the problem.

The SAHRC found that the municipality failed to provide residents with water and sanitation.

"We recommended that the municipality put interim measures in place, that should be linked to the long-term provision of water," he said.


Read more on:    police  |  sahrc  |  ipid  |  mahikeng  |  police brutality  |  protests

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


ANCYL: Not voting would be blasphemy

Not voting in the forthcoming elections would be blasphemy, the ANCYL says in a statement commemorating the 50th anniversary of struggle icon Nelson Mandela's Rivonia trial speech.


Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now! - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Canon EOS 600D

The Canon EOS 600D Digital Camera puts the widely respected...

From R5389.95

I'm shopping for:


There may be a break through, either through quiet contemplative time to connect to your deep side or forced on you more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.