Mahikeng protesters to appear in court

Sunday, April 22, 2018

A total of 23 people, who participated in violent protests in Mahikeng, are set to appear in the Mmabatho Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

“Nine suspects were arrested on Friday for public violence. They are expected to appear in the Mmabatho Magistrates’ Court on Monday. They will appear together with 14 other suspects that were arrested between Thursday and Friday. Police are maintaining their presence in the area to ensure that the situation is stabilised,” said Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Baile Motswenyane.

The nine, who were arrested on Friday, attempted to burn properties late in the evening on Friday following three days of violent protests in Mahikeng and surrounding villages.

“In the first incident, a petrol bomb that caused minor damages, was thrown at a house belonging to a traffic official in Magogwe Tar village. No one was injured during the incident. In the second separate incident, a petrol bomb that was apparently meant to cause fire and damages to Mmabana Foundation building failed. This is the same building that was burnt on Thursday,” said the Provincial Commissioner.

Provincial Commissioner Motswenyane says although Mahikeng has returned to a state of normalcy, members of the public should remain calm but vigilant and report any criminal activities to the police that are committed under the pretext of community protest.

 “At this stage, despite visible objects that were used as barricades, traffic is flowing on most of the roads and allowing members of the community to travel to their destinations,” said Provincial Commissioner Motswenyane.

A relatively calm situation prevailed after President Cyril Ramaphosa visited the town on Friday.

The President cut his working visit to London, United Kingdom, short because of protest action that brought the city to a standstill.

The President was locked in a meeting with government and political party leaders all of Friday afternoon.

Following the meeting, the President said issues regarding North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo, governance and corruption were raised as some of the concerns and reasons for the protest. He asked for more time to find “sustainable solutions” and requested the community to remain calm.

The President promised the residents of Mahikeng that their concerns would be dealt with speedily following consultation with community members across the province. –

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