Cops probe attack on Cope

2010-03-18 00:00

A SPECIAL police task team has been established by the Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service, Monnye Ngobeni, to investigate complaints that ­Clermont police failed to protect Congress of the People (Cope) members when they were allegedly driven out of their homes by armed ANC supporters.

On Monday, The Witness reported that about 32 Cope members in the KwaShembe settlement in the Durban west township of Clermont were allegedly forced to flee their homes after being threatened in front of the police with attacks by about 100 armed people.

Cope provincial secretary Philip Mhlongo called on the Commissioner and MEC for Safety and Community Liaison Willies Mchunu to intervene on the matter.

Speaking on behalf of the provincial commissioner yesterday, Senior Superintendent Jay Naicker said a police task team will be established to look into the allegations.

“By yesterday, only one case of intimidation had been opened at the local police station.

“Police had been deployed in the troublesome area to ensure a 24-hour visibility and to make sure that no further intimidation takes place.

“We also want to ensure no further occurrence of any acts of violence there,” Naicker said.

Asked about the people who had fled their homes when intimidation flared up at the weekend, Naicker said they could return to their homes “as we are there to protect them”.

Mchunu’s spokesperson, Bheki Mncube, said the matter was receiving urgent attention from the office of the MEC.

“All incidents that put public safety at risk are a priority to the MEC and hence a senior official has been appointed to investigate the matter,” Mncube said.

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