Police allegedly watch as mob damage Pajero
NHLANGANO - Police allegedly watched as an armed mob took turns damaging a Pajero vehicle which belonged to a Nhlangano businessman opposite the Nhlangano Police Station on Saturday night.
According to sources, the businessman had sought refuge at the police station after the same group of men had allegedly assaulted him at KaMjuda where he managed to escape and rush to the police station for protection.
Sources who were present allege that close to 20 men arrived at the police station and demanded the release of the businessman so that they could deal with him because he was allegedly the leader of another group which they don’t see eye to eye with.
The sources said earlier on, a fight broke out in one of the watering holes between the two groups which is where the businessman was allegedly assaulted before he went to the police station.
The mob is said to have damaged the businessman’s Pajero after the police refused to release him as per their demand.
Sources allege that they smashed the car’s windows, lights and other parts using various weapons while the police watched.
The drama is said to have lasted for close to an hour. A contingent of more police officers later arrived from the police camp in private and police cars, after an alarm was raised for back-up, however, it was late as the mob had already left, the sources said.
"As soon as they left after damaging the car, the police drove around town, supposedly checking the whereabouts of the mob and a few minutes later the businessman was escorted out of the police station," a source, who witnessed the incident, alleged.
It was reliably gathered that the bad blood between the two factions emanated from the skirmish that unfolded at Club Rehab sometime ago, whereby an on duty traffic police officer was hit with a beer bottle and stones on the face while trying to stop a fight between the fighting factions.
Police Public Relations Officer, Superintendent Wendy Hleta confirmed the matter and said it was still being investigated. Hleta said the police would try to engage both factions in talks in a bid to find a lasting solution as their continued fighting had the potential of spilling blood.
The police mouthpiece also revealed that some of the people who were engaged in the fight were currently out on bail after assaulting patrons at Hlanganani Bar and vandalising property.
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