South Africa 11.5.2017 06:13 pm

Coligny hawkers hope for the best

DRC national Mahuno Obedy says protesters looted and damaged his haircut business and hopes the calm prevailing will be sustained. Photo: Stringer/ANA

DRC national Mahuno Obedy says protesters looted and damaged his haircut business and hopes the calm prevailing will be sustained. Photo: Stringer/ANA

A businessman said it was a relief that the small turn was slowly turning to normal.

Street vendors, who suffered the most during the violent protest in Coligny, North West, hope the calm situation on Thursday, would prevail and can be sustained.

“The protest affected us very badly. We could not open and our stall were broken and looted,” said Mahuno Obedy from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

He runs a hair salon, Pastor Haircut, and also sells fruit and sweets next to it along Voortrekker Street.

“On Monday when riots broke I closed and went home, later I was told my business was burgled. Hair clippers were taken…”

His country man, Shanhangwa Amasi, who run a hair salon next to him said a car battery he used to generate electricity was stolen and mirrors broken.

“The damage was about R2 000. I am happy that the area is stable We can again earn a living.”

Businessman Andries Meintjies said it was a relief that the small turn was slowly turning to normal.

“It is a relief business are opened, the town is back to life again,” he said.

People were moving down the streets and more cars were visible on Voortrekker Street.

The small farming town was completely shut down on May 8, after two men accused of killing Matlhomola Jonas Mosweu, 16, were granted bail.

Furious residents who were against the two being granted bail set alight three houses.

Magistrate Makgaola Foso granted Pieter Doorewaard, 26 and Phillip Schutte 34, R5000 bail each. Their case was postponed to June 26, for investigation.

The two are accused of killing Mosweu in what was believed to be a racial motivated killing. They alleged Mosweu had stolen sunflower from their employer’s field near Scotland informal settlement.

His death sparked violent protest and divided the community into racial lines.

A resident of Tlhabologang in Coligny, Rebecca Mmakolobe said all people needed each other.

“We are all human beings, the only difference is the skin colour. We breathe the same oxygen, when we die our grave are of the same size. We all have red blood, why do we have to see ourselves as black and white yet we claim to be equal children of God.”

She said one of her children worked at the bottle store that was torched near the magistrates’ court.

“She gets on well with her employer. I never heard her complaining. She is at home now because her workplace was burnt. Whether she will get her job we do no know. The protest might have cost her a job.”

She said the situation was promising that stability would be restored in Coligny.

North West premier Supra Mahumapelo was expected to visit Coligny on Friday, while Democratic Alliance leader in North West Joe McGluwa was expected to lay incitement charges against Mahumapelo at the Coligny police station on Friday.

African News Agency (ANA)

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