The Community of Lenasia Ext 13, south of Johannesburg, barricaded the main road following the shooting and killing of a young man allegedly by the Community Patrolling Forum (CPF). Seven people were wounded, one was killed and six others wounded.
Lenasia community members say that they hold Councillor Imraan Ismail Moosa, who is the leader of Al Jama-ah and Councillor of ward 9, Region G, responsible for the shooting and killing of Pfananani Mudogwa also known as Skele.
The community woke up to a sombre public holiday after learning about the shooting and killing of Skele and the injury of several others. They took to the streets barricading the road with burning tyres, tree branches and rocks in protest against the senseless killing of their children.
The police fired teargas at the protesting community members and a South African Police Service (SAPS) helicopter which had been circulating the area since 12h00 pm at night was seen flying around throughout Friday morning.
Activist and community member, Tharison Buthelezi says the dispute started at around 14h00 pm on Wednesday afternoon when he and about 30 other young men gathered at a vacant plot.
The group was assisting Skele erect a foundation for his house.
Skele and his brother were involved in a dispute over the ownership of the piece of land with another resident on Thursday afternoon. When the woman saw the group on what she claims to be her plot, she subsequently alerted the Councillor of the activity.
According to Buthelezi, shortly thereafter the police arrived and instructed them to go to the Councillor as they are not allowed to build on the vacant land.
Later that evening, the Councillor arrived with the CPF at around 10h00 pm during rolling blackouts. The community accuses the Community Patrolling Forum (CPF) of using live ammunition on unarmed residents.
“We call his expropriation of land. How do you invade or land grab in your own country? No one understands the plight of the youth. When you apply for RDP’s the lines are too long, and then we can’t afford bonds, they are too expensive. We are tired of people from outside Ext 13 coming here and taking land whilst there is no provision for the youth. Indians grab land but there are no reports of them grabbing land. They build flats and double storeys and no one says anything,” adds Buthelezi.
He recalls that the incident was so traumatic, adding that Skele who was standing not too far from him was struck by a bullet in the neck. He cries that it could have easily been him as he recollects seeing Skele falling dead to the ground.
Buthelezi laments, “There is pseudo racism here in Lenz (Lenasia). We witnessed what happened in Phoenix KZN happen here yesterday. When Skele died yesterday, a part of me died with him. There was nothing wrong with the police coming here to do their job, but why did they not leave us alone? Why did they have to use live ammunition to kill us?”
Five others were rushed to the nearby hospitals for treatment; one is in critical condition, while others were injured.
Meanwhile, Matshidiso Lekepetsi (48), whose house is adjacent to Skele’s property and his compatriots were building on says her house was destroyed when Skele’s structure was being mangled down by a bulldozer.
She says her neighbour claimed that Khaya and Skele were building on her land. She adds that when the lady saw the brothers continue building on the land, she called the Councillor who subsequently arrived with the police on Thursday evening.
Community of Lenasia Ext 13 barricaded the main road following the shooting and killing of a young by allegedly the CPF. Sven of them were shot at, one was killed on the spot leaving others critically injured.#SABC pic.twitter.com/Hfrhfwdgmm
— Bregabytes (@Bregabytes) December 16, 2022
Lekepetsi adds that the altercation between some community members who were against the land grab led to the scuffle which led to the death of Skele.
When the community members verged on the same property again for the third time, they came with a bulldozer. She says she heard a commotion in the back of her house; she jumped out of her house. Apparently after landing on the ground, she saw her wall collapse on her house.
The house collapsed and shooting ensued. She says her partner including several others were shot at. She says it was so dark they had to look for the wounded using torch lights on their cellphones.
She explains that she had to sleep in the dilapidated house overnight and has not had a bath since then.
While attempts have been made by others to reach out to the councillor, there has been no word from him and she has nowhere else to go. She adds that she wants the councillor to urgently attend to her matter as her house was wrongfully damaged.
SABC News tried to get commentary from the family of the deceased, but Skele’s brother, Khaya Mudogwa who was clearly distraught said he could not comment at the time. However, community members continued to trickle in at the family home to send their condolences. Others camped outside the family home in protest, seeking justice for Skele.
The community says they are tired of the racism in Lenasia and that they want justice for Skele, and others who were senselessly shot at simply for fighting for what they call ‘a basic human right’.
At the time of publishing this story, Councillor Moosa could still not be reached despite several attempts to reach him for comment.