The South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) has condemned the killing of a man who was beaten and set alight in an apparent mob attack in Philippi, Cape Town.
“The barbaric and ghastly mob justice… will only lead to lawlessness and a vicious cycle of violence,” Sanco national spokesman Jabu Mahlangu said in a statement.
The killing was reportedly carried out by a vigilante mob in broad daylight in Cape Town on Friday.
Mahlangu urged communities to report crime to the authorities in the criminal justice system instead of taking the law into their own hands, and appealed to the community to assist police in the investigation of the gruesome murder.
“Urgent action needs to be taken to restore the confidence of communities in accountable and democratic community policing to address mob justice incidents that appear to be on the increase.”
Mahlangu said vigilantism created a cycle of violence that undermined the rule of law. Quicker police response to distress calls, increased visibility, and regular investigation progress updates to crime victims would contribute towards restoring confidence in the criminal justice system.
It was believed residents accused the man of robbery before allegedly taking the law into their own hands, Mahlangu said.
Western Cape police spokesman Captain FC van Wyk said “circumstances surrounding the death of an unidentified man, who was stoned and burnt to death, are under investigation. We’ve opened a murder case for further investigation”.