Durban Action Against Xenophobia

August 19, 2008

refugees assaulted by police

Filed under: Updates — durbancrisis @ 7:32 pm

Police assaulted us, refugees claim

By Mpume Madlala

“Where is our protection? Police have resorted to beating us for nothing.”

This was the lament of some refugees at Albert Park after several of them were allegedly assaulted by police officers at the weekend.

Frederic Eca Bakeni, one of those assaulted, said: “I was at my street hair salon in Warwick Triangle. A group of us were busy with customers when we suddenly saw a woman running past the salon and a casually dressed man chasing after her.

‘He continued to chase the woman and when he caught up with her, he beat her’

“The man had a black bag with him, which he dumped inside my salon. He continued to chase the woman and when he caught up with her, he beat her.”

Eca Bakeni decided to place the bag outside the salon.

“We did not know what was in the bag and that is why I moved it, but the man came back and slapped me across the face. I asked him what I had done and that is when he told me I had a big mouth and pulled out his gun on me,” he said.

Eca Bakeni said his brother tried to help him, but the man called the police. “My brother was beaten and then arrested. I did not know where they took him and we looked everywhere for him, but we could not find him.

“He returned to the camp on Monday but he is unable to speak.

‘… he told me I had a big mouth and pulled out his gun on me’

“On Sunday, the same man came back with other police officers and this time he was dressed in police uniform and that was the only time we realised that he worked for the South African Police Service.”

Eca Bakeni said on Sunday he and two other people were beaten at their salon before being taken in a police car to a desolate spot under the bridge on Victoria Embankment where the assault continued.

“They told the other two guys to run away and then sprayed teargas in a plastic bag and placed it over my head. They repeatedly kicked me in the stomach before leaving me there in pain.”

Bibimba Mufaume, leader of the Congolese refugees, said it had been bad enough when they were assaulted by community members, but it was now worse because the police were beating them. “We have now completely lost hope. We no longer have any protection.”

Police spokesperson Superintendent Muzi Mngomezulu said because it was hard to follow up on cases without case numbers, the victims should report these incidents to the police.

“If they do not get any help from the Broad Street Police Station, which is closest to them, then they should report their cases to the station commissioner at Durban Central Police Station,” he said.

July 17, 2008

picnic time

Filed under: Updates — durbancrisis @ 7:34 pm

Please join us this this saturday (19th) at 2pm for a picnic in Albert Park.

Bring your picnic basket (with some to share) and games (there are lots of kids and big sports fields ) and join us for a fun and relaxing time in the sun (in even of sudden and drastic downpour, it will be cancelled)

We are at the top of Albert Park, where the refugee tent is. Its on Diakonia Avenue, right at the top near the highway, and there is a drive in entrance with lots of parking.

Invite your friends and families. If anyone wants organise and bring people from other sites (especially the kids), that would make it even more fun.

the end of the road

Filed under: Updates — durbancrisis @ 11:55 am

Lungisa Manzi, the city’s head of disaster management has said: “The municipality does not have the mandate nor the resources to continue (sic) to sustain the requirements of those foreign nationals who have decided not to return home or to go back to their houses.”

Of course they never actually provided any of that alleged assistance, but we now know that neither the city nor the province are ever going to provide shelters, and are now planning to actively tear down the tent at Albert Park (probably on Friday 18th)  and evict the refugees from the park.

July 15, 2008

Albert Park need supplies

Filed under: Updates — durbancrisis @ 11:25 pm

Tueday 15 June: The shelter at Albert Park urgently need some supplies

cooking oil, maize meal, baby food, nappies, washing powder, chicken, meat, tinned fish, sugar, sugar, potatoes, bread, fruit and vegetables, toys, washing line, plastic cups and plates, and water (they have no water supply)

They are at the highway end of Albert Park on Diakonia Ave, in the rectangular tent, quite clearly visible.

July 14, 2008

Albert Park 12 July

Filed under: Updates — durbancrisis @ 4:24 am

Albert Park

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