Mathafeni’s lifeless body was found on the morning of 1 May 2008 in Sebokeng Zone 20. He was a community activist involved with the Sebokeng Ward 2 Concerned Residents that on Tuesday blockaded the Golden Highway to demand that the government responds to their memorandum, which was submitted on the 10th of March. Police arrested Mathafeni on Tuesday, the 29th of April, and beat him so badly with batons that he had to see a doctor on his release on Wednesday morning. He was re-arrested later in the evening – and last seen alive in the hands of the arresting officers.
Until an investigation proves otherwise, we, the members of the Coalition Against Water Coalition, accuse the police of responsibility for Mathafeni’s death. It is enough to know that Mathafeni was so badly beaten during his first detention that he required stitches that his re-arrest could only have been intended to continue meting out the punishment. The police have shown no compunction in resorting to live ammunition when dealing with Tuesday’s protest. Killing a man in detention is just another step up from the crime the police in Sebokeng have already shown themselves capable of.
Justice for comrade Mathafeni! Investigate the police for murder!