John Moodey MPL
The DA will request an explanation from police for shooting at Mooiplaas protesters with rubber bullets at the Union Buildings yesterday.
Gauteng Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko confirmed in a written response to my question in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature that the standing order banning the use of rubber bullets is still in effect.
Despite this the use of rubber bullets is increasingly common, as was seen again yesterday outside the Union Buildings. A 12-year-old boy was also shot, allegedly in the head, and wounded during a protest in Jabulani, Soweto.
The standing order banning the use of rubber bullets came after the tragic death of Andries Tatane at the hand of police using rubber bullets to disperse a protest.
Rubber bullets may not be used as a first response to maintaining public order.
Police must explain what exceptional circumstances motivated and justified the use of rubber bullets at the Union Buildings yesterday.
Maintaining public order us a core constitutional function of the police.
However, this must be done within the framework of the Constitution and the values contained in the Bill of Rights.
The unnecessary use of brutal police tactics undermine public confidence in the police.