Police investigate arson after farmhouse set alight in Eshowe protest

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A farmhouse in Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal being set alight. Picture: Twitter/@bluehawktactic1
A farmhouse in Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal being set alight. Picture: Twitter/@bluehawktactic1

Police are investigating charges of public violence, malicious damage to property and arson after residents in Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal, set a farmhouse alight during a violent protest in the area.

However, police said calm had been restored after Sunday’s protest.

South African Police Services spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said protesters forced their way into the farm, burnt a building and stole a bakkie.

Residents also barricaded the R66 and P230 roads on the outskirts of Eshowe.

Gwala said the protests had started in the afternoon and went on into the night. No arrests had been made.

“The situation is calm at the moment. Police are in the area, monitoring the situation,” Gwala told News24 on Monday.

She added that the vehicle that was allegedly stolen was found burnt on Monday morning.

The incident comes after a similar protest in March, in the same area, that was sparked by the fatal shooting of a 30-year-old man, allegedly by the farm’s security guard.

The man, Siphamandla Xulu, was believed to be illegally fishing at a river on the farm when he was shot.

Xulu had allegedly refused to leave when asked to do so, which led to an altercation and the fatal shooting. The security guard was arrested and remains in custody after being denied bail.

-Additional reporting by News24

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