The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) is investigating the killing of an eMalahleni man allegedly at the hands of police officers at the weekend.
“Ipid has taken over the investigation,” Mpumalanga police spokesperson Colonel Leonard Hlathi told News24 on Monday. He did not provide further details of the incident.
Ipid could not be immediately reached for comment.
A local community leader who wished to remain anonymous told News24 three police officers confronted two owners of spaza shops on Sunday.
“They demanded bribes, and then they demanded passports,” he said.
The officers allegedly threatened to arrest the shop owners, but a local ANC member confronted the officers and an argument ensued. The officers then left.
“They came back five minutes later with two vans and the officers shot four men. One died,” the man said.
“I don’t think [the police] were provoked. The officers opened fire”.
He said residents marched “peacefully” to the local police station on Monday morning, and some leaders held a meeting with the station commander.
“We were told the officers were suspended with immediate effect,” the man said.
“But we were surprised because one of the officers was there in the station [in] uniform.”
He said residents then took to the streets to barricade nearby roads with burning tyres and rocks.
Hlathi confirmed there had been a “little” protest but said it was dispersed.
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