Farm attack victims 'pushed around' by police - AfriForum

2015-07-27 18:00
(via Web)

(via Web)

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Johannesburg - Members of AfriForum and relatives of victims of farm attacks say they will lay complaints against Police Minister Nathi Nhleko, national police commissioner General Riah Phiyega and the Tshwane Metro Police after they were pushed around and threatened by officers at a gathering in front of Nhleko's office on Monday.

"It is a violation of every victim’s basic rights concerning freedom of movement, freedom of speech and freedom of bodily integrity," AfriForum's deputy CEO, Ernst Roets, said.

"If the minister is of the opinion that he can silence those requesting... the prioritisation of farm murders by means of bully tactics, he is making a huge mistake."

Roets said the group had gathered in front of Nhleko's offices on Monday morning to hand over a memorandum at the SA Police Service's head office.

The memorandum contained a motion of no confidence in the police department and the SAPS, stating that they were failing to actively combat farm murders.

Roets said instead of being assisted, the group faced hostility from the department and the police.

"A group of victims whose loved ones were murdered approach the police for help, but the Metro Police fails to organise security for the gathering, the minister refuses to receive their memorandum and he sends his troops to push around the victims after they had to wait in the street for an hour."

Threatened with arrest

While waiting, Roets and AfriForum's head of security, Ian Cameron, had decided to walk towards the entrance hall to hand over the memorandum.

They were allegedly stopped by police officials who reportedly pushed them around and threatened them with arrest.

"Bernadette Hall, whose husband was murdered on their farm in 2012, was also pushed around by the police officials," Roets said.

Police allegedly told Roets that their gathering was illegal, which Roets denied. He said Nhleko's office and the Tshwane Metro Police were notified ahead of time.

"Notwithstanding all the proof that the minister’s office and the Tshwane Metro Police received our notification to hold this gathering, it was alleged today that no one was informed about the gathering and that it was, in their opinion, an illegal gathering."

Roets said the organisation was seeking legal advice on which channels were best to file their complaints. 

Gauteng police spokesperson Lungelo Dlamini said he was not aware of the incident.

Nhleko's spokesperson, Musa Zondi, could not immediately be reached for comment.

Read more on:    afriforum  |  saps  |  nathi nhleko  |  johannesburg  |  farm attacks
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