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NO VIOLENCE AT MEMORIAL BEFORE WE CAME – COP ADMITS

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MATSAPHA – A senior police officer has admitted that there was no violence at St Paul’s Sports Ground before they came in and that mourners moved from the tent after their arrival.

Assistant Superintendent Mfanimpela Mazibuko admitted the above when Advocate Mduduzi ‘Tsotsi’ Mabila cross-examined him as they watched a video clip. When the video clip had played for 0.04 minutes, the advocate asked the witness if he would agree with him that there was no violence of any nature, but what was seen, were people singing and dancing. The witness responded to the positive. Thereafter, he asked if he would agree that until up to that stage (0.04 minutes played) no one talked about the police – why they were entering the premises.  Again, the witness responded to the positive.

When the video clip reached 0.11 minutes, the advocate asked the witness if he had heard a voice saying abajike (they should go back) and he responded to the affirmative.  “You will agree with me that we can safely conclude that the mourners said this because they were seeing you (police) entering the premises and that their statement; ‘abajike’ was directed to you?” the advocate asked and the witness agreed with him. Again, at 0.13 minutes, the advocate asked the witness if he would agree with him that there was a visible police armoured vehicle which was entering the gate of the sports ground. The witness agreed. “You will also agree with me that this was the time you (police) entered the premises?” the advocate asked and again the witness responded to the positive. When the video clip had played for 0.47 minutes, Advocate Mabila asked the witness if he would agree with him that the mourners allegedly moved away from the tent, towards where their (police) vehicle was coming. Once more, Mazibuko agreed with the advocate.

Thereafter, the advocate told him that he believed he had noticed that prior to this; the mourners were allegedly near the tent and far from where the police vehicle was. The witness response was to the positive. When the video clip had played for 0.55 minutes, the advocate asked Mazibuko if he would agree with him that he had seen at least two people picking up something, which he believed were stones. In response, Mazibuko submitted that even though he could not agree with the advocate regarding the number, he saw people picking up something like stones and a chair. At 1.06 minutes, the advocate asked the witness if he had noticed that people who picked up something like stones were walking towards the police vehicle and pelted it with the supposed stones. The witness agreed. “These people pelted you (police) with stones in an effort to make you go away and that is why they were shouting; ‘bebayaphi, abajike (where were they going to, they should go back)’?” the advocate claimed.

Intention

In turn, the witness submitted that he heard the statement (bebayaphi, abajike), but mentioned that through his experience, he would state that this was not their only intention. Thereafter, the advocate asked him if he was denying the evidence in the video clip and what they were all hearing. The witness submitted that he was not denying it, but alleged that what the video showed was one sided. He argued that the side where there was dust and people picking up stones from a sloppy area was not shown.
However, the advocate asked the technician to replay the video clip for the witness, especially the part where people were seen picking up something like stones and going up the sloppy area. The witness asked the technician to stop the video clip at 1.13 minutes and submitted that it allegedly showed people next to the road going down the sloppy area. He alleged that those were the people who were allegedly violent as they supposedly pelted them with stones and hit vehicles belonging to the public.
However, the advocate told him that those were allegedly the people whom he agreed left the tent and went towards the police vehicle when it arrived at the venue. In response, the witness claimed that his submission was that the people were from the centre of the ground, not the tent.

In turn, the advocate said some of the people were next to the tent because it could not accommodate all of them. He emphasised that some were at the sports ground. “I admit, they were from the sports ground, not the tent,” the witness responded. Still, the advocate maintained that they were at the sports ground and closer to the tent. Eventually the witness also agreed.

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