Social Justice Coalition protests community protection from police

| Nokubonga Yawa
Picture of a protest outside parliament. Photo by Nokubonga Yawa.

On March 11th, the Social Justice Coalition (SJC) staged a protest outside of parliament in Cape Town proposing a new memorandum aimed at improving relations between community members and the police that serve them.

The protest, part of their on-going campaign for safe communities, was in reaction to the recent death of Mozambican taxi driver Mido Macia who was dragged behind a police van last month and died in custody amidst allegations of police brutality and corruption.

The memorandum also listed numerous of cases of citizens and refugees allegedly violated by police officers on duty. These cases included stories of deaths in detention, arbitrary detention without trial, abuse of power, xenophobia and powerlessness of the independent police investigative directorate.

Section 5.2. of the memorandum says “Parliament must take action to recover damages from those SAPS officers implicated in death in custody, rape, assault and destruction of property”.

About fifty members of the SJC sang outside parliament for around two hours while proudly displaying their plug cards. They were joined by participants from sister organisations Ndifuna Ukwazi and the Treatment Action Campaign Khayelitsha community members. Plug cards included sketches of Macia being dragged by the police car.

SJC organizers deemed the event a success as parliament member Annelize Van Wyk, chairperson of the portfolio committee on police, thanked the crowd and encouraged them to continue with the work they are doing as activists. She also promised to take the memorandum and the demands forward to the portfolio committee, promising that they would review them and respond.

For more information about the Social Justice Coalition and/or its campaign for safer communities, please contact 021 361 8160 or visit

TOPICS:  Crime Human Rights

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