mangaung shutdown

Mangaung shutdown: Teen boy killed in violent protests

Andile Sicetsha - 17.05.2021

The Mangaung shutdown has resulted in the death of a teen boy.

Bloemfontein police have arrested a security guard for the murder of a 15-year-old who was shot during the Mangaung shutdown violence that escalated in the Free State town on Monday.

Mangaung shutdown: Teen protester shot and killed

The service delivery protests turned ugly when a teenage boy was killed on Dr Belcher Road. According to police spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele, the security guard released a gunshot into a crowd of protesters that was headed towards a warehouse he was stationed at.

“It is alleged that a group of protesters went to attack a Warehouse in Dr Belcher road, Bloemfontein. The security guard who was alone at the time, fired a shot in a quest to scare the mob but unfortunately hit a 15-year-old boy. The boy died at the scene,” Brig Makhele noted in a statement.

The 57-year-old guard has been charged with murder and will make his first court appearance at the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court as soon as his case docket has been filed.

What’s the latest in Mangaung?

At the time this article was published, tensions were still rife in Mangaung and other parts of Bloemfontein. Protest leaders from the community group Mangaung Community Concern are calling for a complete restructuring at the metro’s council after years of inaction in their calls for better service delivery.

Motorists have been warned by police to avoid, as much as possible, driving along Mangaung. According to Makhele, innocent people are falling victim to a syndicate that has infiltrated the protest action to execute illegal agendas.

Take, for instance, the horrific encounter a 41-year-old manager of Mangaung’s solid waste department faced earlier on his way to work.

“[The victim] was driving his white BMW on MacKenzie Street in Heidedal on the way to work when he was stopped by a Silver Isuzu Bakkie with registration number JkJ 673 NW. Three males from the Bakkie approached him and one pointed him with a firearm and instructed him to get out of the vehicle. They then drove away with his BMW and after a few minutes, the vehicle was recovered burnt at MacKenzie street,” Makhele revealed.

A case of hijacking was opened and police are still in search of the suspects. According to Makhele, the Mangaung shutdown showed no signs of cooling as “the situation is still tense and closely monitored by the police.”