Teen shot dead in North West protest

2014-04-10 07:11
(File, Sapa)

(File, Sapa)

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Johannesburg - A teenage boy was shot dead in a protest in Christiana near Bloemhof, the North West government said on Thursday.

He was allegedly part of a mob looting shops while protests were underway in the town. When the group arrived at a tavern, its owner fired shots at them, killing the boy and injuring two other people.

"We are saddened that the life of a person so young was cut short under such unfortunate circumstances and wish to convey our condolences to the family that lost their loved one," Premier Thandi Modise said.

She appealed for calm following the shooting.

"Everything has to be done to normalise the situation, prevent destruction of private properties and loss of lives."

A community hall was also gutted in Christiana.

Last week, protests started in Boitumelong township in neighbouring Bloemhof.

Council team to talk to protesters

On Monday, residents blocked the N12 and set alight a municipal office, community hall, five houses belonging to the mayor, two councillors and two officials and several businesses.

By Tuesday, the protest had spilled over to Coverdale in Christiana where a community hall was torched.

Modise was expected to lead a provincial executive council (Exco) intervention task team to talk to protesters in Boitumelong on Thursday at 15:00.

She was also expected to meet with residents of Bodibe in Itsoseng near Lichtenburg on Friday.

In Bloemhof, residents blocked roads, burned tyres and looted shops belonging to foreign nationals on Wednesday.

Schooling was disrupted and residents could not go to work because the roads were blocked in the area.

"We don't know what the protest was about because we have not received a memorandum," said North West provincial government spokesperson Lesiba Moses Kgwele.

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