South African police call for end to violent riots

After more than 100 people were arrested in connection with the looting of a mall in South Africa on Tuesday, police and security officials urged the public to refrain from rioting. 

In the Johannesburg township of Daveyton, police have accused persons who took part in disturbances. 

The detention of former President Jacob Zuma has sparked violence, with 72 people killed and 1,200 people arrested in poor sections of two provinces in recent days. 

Bheki Cele, the South African Police Minister, stated that the security forces will not allow “mockery of our democratic state” and will increase their efforts to prevent bloodshed. 

In support of the police, the military has sent 2,500 troops.

Thousands of individuals stole food, electric appliances, wine, and apparel from stores, resulting in stampedes, according to police. 

Some of those arrested in Daveyton were bleeding from smashed glass on slick floors from riot-related liquid spills. 

Running battles continued as security and police used stun grenades and rubber bullets to push back rioters who were breaking into stores through delivery doors, emergency exits, and roofs. 

Authorities have regularly cautioned everyone, especially Zuma fans and family members, against inciting disturbances on social media. 

A dozen persons have been identified to having instigated the riots, according to police.

Zuma is serving a 15-month contempt of court sentence for refusing to testify in an inquiry into charges of corruption during his presidency from 2009 to 2018. 

On Monday, Zuma’s attempt to have his sentence overturned was considered by the country’s highest court, the Constitutional Court. 

Zuma’s attorney claimed that the Supreme Court erred in condemning Zuma to prison. The judges stated they will announce their judgement at a later date after 10 hours of testimony. 

According to official data, more than half of South Africa’s 60 million people live in poverty, with a 32 percent unemployment rate.

The epidemic, combined with job losses and a slump in the economy, has exacerbated the hunger and desperation that fueled the violence sparked by Zuma’s arrest.

Educator, writer and legal researcher at Alafarika for Studies and Consultancy.

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