The South African police had their hands full on Monday as the "Black First Land First" group protested outside Luthuli House demanding that President Jacob Zuma to be allowed to serve out his term. The ANC's National Working Committee was meeting with regards to the pressure being placed on President Zuma to step down. Protesters warned the public that they should stay away from Luthuli House.
Nkateko Makete, a resident of a local informal settlement in Orange Farm, had not heard of the warnings and headed to Luthuli House on Monday to lay complaints about a lack of service delivery in her area. Makete and her husband, Robert, took a wrong turn and found themselves amongst ANC protesters. Their bakkie was soon attacked, protesters pulled the residents of Orange Farm off the back of the bakkie, hitting one woman with a stick and kicking Makete to the ground.
The man responsible for kicking Makete to the ground, Thabiso Setona, has turned himself into the Joburg Central Police Station and was suspended by the region's working committee. Black First Land First president, Andile Mngxitama, made a statement following the violence saying: "The man did not act alone. All those who assisted him should be held accountable but worse, the police were there and folded their arms. We want those policemen to be disciplined. They are there to keep law and order, they know the situation is volatile and they should keep law and order, they did none of that. We have them on video and we will write to Ipid for action to be taken against them. We are going to open a criminal case”.
When questioned, the police spokesperson, Lungelo Dlamini could not find an explanation as to why the police did not act to defend the woman or arrest the violent man on the scene. The ANC Women's League conducted some research on the accused and said that: "It’s a shame that Setona’s gang, under their Siyavuma regalia, unleashed their barbaric acts on women around Chief Albert Luthuli House during the centenary of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who was the epitome of peace and reconciliation. And also the centenary of Nontsikelelo Albertina Sisulu, a former leader of the ANCWL, who spent her life fighting for the rights of women. In the spirit of renewal and unity, the ANC must expel all its members who participated in this shameful act of assaulting women and suspend the organisers who created the conducive environment for vigilantes to run amok and maul defenceless women under the disguise of defending Chief Albert Luthuli House."
Makete is recovering at home luckily only sustaining minor injuries and is waiting for justice to be served to her attacker.