WATCH | EFF protesters storm Clicks in Komani, shopper injured

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  • A woman shopper was taken to hospital with an injured ankle after EFF members attacked at least two Clicks stores in Komani.
  • More than six angry "fighters" entered Nonesi Mall Clicks and pushed over metal shelves after stopping guards from rolling down a shutter door.
  • The mall said it has sent CCTV footage of the incident to the landlord and Clicks for further action.
  • A video doing the rounds also captured the second incident on Cathcart Road in Komani.

A morning shopper injured an ankle and was taken to hospital after a group of angry EFF supporters stormed at least two Clicks stores in Komani, formerly Queenstown, pushing over shelves on Monday.

At Nonesi Mall, centre manager Yolanda Moss said a woman, in her early 30s, was about to pay at the till when more than six people dressed in EFF outfits attacked the outlet.

Moss said the group had earlier attacked a second Clicks store in the town situated on Cathcart Road in the city centre, where a video of the incident was captured, before proceeding to the sister store at the mall.

READ | Clicks workers 'unfortunate collateral' - EFF's Floyd Shivambu vows to protest the whole week

At Nonesi Mall, Moss said the shopper fell down and injured her ankle after possibly slipping on a hand sanitiser which was thrown on the floor by the protesters, or after she was hit by a shelf.

The attack on the Komani branch is one of many demonstrations targeting Clicks stores countrywide. Some have gone by without incident, while some have turned violent.

A case of malicious damage to property has been opened with the police following the incident, confirmed Eastern Cape police spokesperson Colonel Sibongile Soci.

She said no arrests have been made. 

The violent scenes at some Clicks stores come after the franchise received backlash after an advert on its website described pictures of black hair as "damaged" and "dry".

News24 reported that the advert described the hair of two black women as "dry and damaged" and "frizzy and dull" while the description for two white women's hair was "fine and flat" and "normal".

The advert went viral and sparked public outrage prompting Clicks Group CEO Vikesh Ramsunder to apologise for the "insensitive and offensive advertisement".

READ HERE | EFF's Shivambu: Clicks must lose profits after racist ad

Despite the apology, the EFF issued a directive to all its "ground forces" to "assist" Clicks to shut down from Monday until Friday.

Nonesi Mall Clicks branch manager Zola Bottoman declined to comment and referred News24 to Clicks national spokesperson Susann Caminada.

Caminada said she will respond at a later stage. Her comment will be added once received.

PICS | Protesters use hammers to break down door of Alberton Clicks, set parts of store alight

A video of the incident on Cathcart Road is doing the rounds on social media showing EFF members/supporters ransacking the store.

Moss said the mall and Clicks put measures in place to prevent the EFF from entering its premises.

"No one could have stopped them. They were very forceful," said Moss.

Moss said the angry protesters forcefully stopped a security guard from rolling down a metal roller shutter.

She said the angry man stopped it halfway and rolled it up allowing his fellow protesters to enter the store.

Once they were inside the store, she said they ransacked the shop.

"We had an action plan. We took a decision that we were going to close all entrances after getting a call that they were attacking another Clicks store on the main road. I went to the control room and briefed the guards. While we were talking, we saw a white bakkie pulling up and we knew they were inside the mall.

"When they forced the door open, they also smashed the sanitiser and it leaked on the floor. The shopper could have slipped on the sanitizer or could have been forced down by the impact of the falling shelves. She was taken to hospital by ambulance. Her ankle looked as if it was broken," said Moss.

"They were very quick; it was in and out and by the time the police got here they were long gone," said Moss.

Moss said CCTV footage of the incident has been sent to Clicks and the landlord of the mall for further action.

The store has been temporarily closed.

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