Thousands in Sharpeville for Human Rights Day

2014-03-21 14:05

Thousands of ANC supporters gathered at the George Thabe Cricket Pitch in Sharpeville, Vereeniging, today.

Many screamed, ululated and sang when President Jacob Zuma was mentioned.

Justice Minister Jeff Radebe reminded the crowd why they had gathered at the stadium.

Human Rights Day is celebrated on March 21, in remembrance of the Sharpeville massacre on March 21 1960.

The incident took place at the Sharpeville police station in the Vaal, south of Gauteng, where black South Africans were protesting against the pass laws.

A crowd of about 5 000 to 7 000 protesters went to the police station. The police opened fire on the crowd, killing 69 people.

Zuma, and Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor, gave smart ID cards to 12 survivors of the massacre.

Before Zuma addressed the crowd, a group of bikers rode past in front of the stage.

International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane and other senior African National Congress leaders and VIPs danced and praised Zuma.

Earlier, a group of Economic Freedom Fighters members blocked the street to the stadium, dancing and singing songs praising their leader, Julius Malema.

Busloads of ANC members arrived at the stadium.

EFF members came in smaller numbers, travelling in bakkies.

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