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14 April 2011 at 09:21 - Posted by Anonymous

Protester beaten to death by cops - report


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The ANC has condemned the brutal killing of a 36-year old man, allegedly by police in Ficksburg, in the Eastern Free State.

On Wednesday night, the SABC broadcast images of approximately six policemen beating a man with batons and kicking him. He had also been shot in the chest and back.

Timeslive reports that the visuals show how the policemen cornered Andries Tatane, striking him with their batons and kicking him in an assault that lasted for a few minutes.

Tatane, from Masaleng township, Ficksburg, is seen holding his hand against his chest after the assault. He collapsed about 20 minutes later and died before an ambulance arrived, Timeslive reports.

As well as being beaten, he had been shot twice.

According to reports, police have defended their officers, saying a gunshot went off while policemen were trying to arrest the man.

They are investigating who the gun belonged to.

The ANC has called on Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa to institute an immediate commission of inquiry into the man's death.

“It was totally unbelievable, shocking and disgusting to see images on our television screens of such extreme police brutality and murderous activity,” the ANC said in a statement.

The man was among thousands of protesters who marched to the Setsoto local municipality to demand improved service delivery.

According to the SABC, a case of murder has been opened and the Independent Complaints Directorate are set to investigate.

Another 45 people were arrested for public violence and are expected to appear in court soon.

Following the man's death, police are reportedly out in full force at Ficksburg and Meqheleng.

Free State Premier Ace Magashule was quoted as saying that residents had the right to protest, but condemned the death, saying protests should be carried out without violence. - IOL

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