Tensions in Pimville, Soweto, are palpable after the heated confrontation that resulted in the death of a local resident.
Pimville shutdown: Here are the latest updates
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UPDATE – Bheki Cele announces detective team to investigate Chicken Farm shooting – Wednesday 20 April, 14:44
Police Minister Bheki Cele met with Pimville community leaders outside the Kliptown precinct to address events of the past two days, where a man was fatally wounded, and five others left in critical condition, in a confrontation between local residents and foreign nationals from the Chicken Farm informal settlement.
Apart from an increase in police visibility in the area, Minister Cele announced a 12-member team of detectives that’s been assigned to investigate the Chicken Farm shooting.
Minister Cele has assured this community, who say they are NOT #OperationDudula but only residents who want a stable power supply, that special @SAPoliceService operations will begin in the area to address incidents of cable theft and overall crime. https://t.co/bfsGiHdGM0— Lirandzu Themba (@LirandzuThemba) April 20, 2022
No reports of unrest have surfaced thus far.
On Tuesday evening, hours after a deadly confrontation between local Pimville residents, led by Operation Dudula’s Nhlanhla Lux, and members of Chicken Farm, an informal settlement in Soweto largely populated by foreign nationals, a community meeting was held in honour of the victims.
Kgomotso Diale, and at least five others were struck by live ammunition during a peaceful protest in the informal settlement. According to Pimville community leaders, residents approached Chicken Farm to address occupiers about rampant cable theft.
However, their presence was met with hostility and before long, a group of unidentified gunmen hauled assault rifles and opened fire, fatally striking Diale and wounding five others, including four women.
In response, community leaders have vowed to render Pimville and surrounding neighbourhoods in Soweto inoperable until the situation receives the attention of the government.
In a statement, police spokesperson Lirandzu Themba confirmed Minister Bheki Cele will meet with Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant General Elias Mawela for a briefing session. Thereafter, the minister is expected to address the media outside the Kliptown police station.
Law enforcement officials remain on high alert for spurts of violence following a notice of a shutdown in Pimville that’s done the rounds on social media.
At this time, however, no reports of protest activity have surfaced.