Will Ficksburg cops get bail? (29.4.2011)

By Rahima Essop

Community leaders are calling for calm in Ficksburg amid concerns that violence will erupt, if the officers implicated in Andries Tatane’s death are granted bail on Friday.

Tatane was beaten and shot by police during a service delivery protest in the Free State town two weeks ago.

The Ficksburg Regional Court this week heard that releasing the eight officers from custody could spark public disorder and unrest.

Community leader Tseliso Mpekoa said violence will only derail efforts to resolve their service delivery problems.

“We are leading this process by saying to people even if the guys were to be granted bail, we do not want to see any violence,” he said.

A team from the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation will also be going to Ficksburg on Friday to assess the situation. 

“Because there is so much trauma that has been left in the community, there is a likelihood that there might be incidents of violence but there is also a likelihood that whatever decision is made creates space for peace,” said the CSVR’s Emily Mabusela.

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