Witness identifies four officers in Tatane videos

2012-05-15 16:33

Four police officers were identified in court today in three different videos took during the march in which Andries Tatane died.

Tatane was killed during a service delivery protest march on April 13 2011.

Kabelo Pule, a member of the public order policing unit in Thaba Nchu, Free State, identified Mothusi Magano (accused no. 2), Mphonyana Ntaje (accused no. 3), Molefi Finger (accused no. 8) and Moeketsi Skosana (accused no. 6) while giving evidence in the Ficksburg Magistrates Court.

Pule identified Magano as the police officer who is seen holding a shotgun and Ntaje as the one with a baton, hitting Tatane. He said he knew all seven police officers who are on trial for the death of Tatane.

Pule said he had met some of the accused at the police training college in 2006 and had worked with the others since joining the public order policing unit.

He said they had a “friendly relationship”.

Pule testified that he was working in Ficksburg on the day of the march and only saw parts of the incident that led to Tatane’s murder.

He said he saw a man without a shirt (Tatane) in a scuffle with police.

Pule, called by the state, was asked to identify police officers in the official SAPS video and in footage taken by SABC cameraman Filane Chomane.

When asked by prosecutor Celeste Ferris to comment on the behaviour of the police officers in the video footage, Pule said in his opinion it was not right.

He said “they were too many and could have overpowered him (Tatane) and arrested him”.

Johann Nel, legal representative for the accused, grilled Pule about his training and said it did not make him an expert.

Pule replied that he was no expert, just a “normal police officer”.

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