Newtown shooting: MEC to investigate why police left designated posts unmanned - report

2020-01-05 14:46
Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko (PHOTO: Collen Mashaba)

Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko (PHOTO: Collen Mashaba)

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Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko will investigate why metro police were not at designated posts, which could have prevented the Newtown shooting on New Year's Eve, a Sunday report said.

The Sunday Times reported that Mazibuko said both Johannesburg metro and provincial traffic police were meant to have been on site, on the section of the M2 highway bridge where the shooting took place.

This is the spot from which a gunman sent down a burst of bullets into Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown, in the early hours of New Year's Day.

Eleven people were wounded in the attack. The motive is not yet known. Mazibuko reportedly said officials would have to be held accountable as to why they had left their posts.

Criminal investigation under way

She said the highway was meant to be closed for fireworks at midnight and that part of the highway was to remain manned by police to prevent motorists from stopping their vehicles to watch the events.

JMPD spokesperson Wayne Minnaar declined to comment to the publication while the criminal investigation was under way.

The incident occurred at 03:00 on New Year's Day, News24 previously reported.

"Preliminary investigations on the Mary Fitzgerald Square incident reveal that the shooter fired several shots from the upper level of M2 (southbound) double decker bridge and targeted the VIP area," the Gauteng government previously said in a statement.

Gauteng acting premier Panyaza Lesufi said earlier this week there was no reason to believe at this stage that the Newtown shooting, and another shooting that took place on the night outside Poppy's restaurant in Melville, were linked, News24 reported.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  crime  |  service delivery  |  shootings
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