Diepsloot, PE calm after protests – police

2013-06-01 12:10

The situation in Diepsloot, north of Johannesburg was calm today following reports of shop lootings and public violence during the last week, police said.

“It has been quiet, there were no incidents reported,” said Lieutenant colonel Lungelo Dlamini.

Meanwhile, Port Elizabeth was calm and no reports of violence had been reported following several days of protests, according to Brigadier Miranda Mills.

“We have not received anything indicating any violence.”

Mills said yesterday five of the 21 people arrested since Tuesday, the day protests began, appeared in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate’s Court.

All five were remanded in custody until a formal bail application next week.

“They have been charged with possession of suspected stolen property as well as public violence, including malicious damage to property and resisting arrest,” said Mills.

“The remaining 16 suspects have already appeared in court earlier this week, and were released on warning.”

On Monday police arrested 45 people in Diepsloot for public violence, housebreaking, and possession of unlicensed firearms.

The unrest started on Sunday evening after Somali businessman, Bishar Isaack, was arrested for allegedly shooting dead two men, believed to be Zimbabweans, outside his shop.

Issack appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

Dlamini said Isaack (39) appeared on charges of murder.

The case was postponed to June 4, when he was expected to bring a formal bail application.

After the shooting on Sunday, local residents gathered in front of Isaack’s shop, threw stones, and looted his business.

Police dispersed the crowd, but other shops were then looted. Several local businessmen removed their goods and locked their shops.

Nine people were arrested for public violence and possession of suspected stolen goods. They appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday and the case was withdrawn, Dlamini said.

Eastern Cape Captain Stanley Jarvis said earlier yesterday police had saturated areas where the violent protests took place.

Police on Thursday patrolled informal settlements in the northern part of the city after two days of unrest.

A Somali man was stabbed to death in Greenfields, Port Elizabeth, on Thursday, the third murder in the area this week.

Jarvis said at the time the man was stabbed in the head, chest, and abdomen.

It was alleged a group of people went to the Somali’s residence, where a confrontation ensued.

The man was taken to hospital, where he died. The motive for the attack was not yet known and no arrests had been made.

Police said the attack was not linked to the protests.

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