'Cops and soldiers beat me up for 4 hours'
A Soweto man was punched, slapped and sjamboked allegedly by police and soldiers for watching them while on patrol on Monday evening on Monday evening.
Sipho Monaiwa, 33, from Protea South claims he was attacked for watching police and the army patrol on his street from his yard with his gates locked.
When the family went to the Protea Glen police station to lay a complaint yesterday they were turned back and allegedly told by police that they were in fact breaking the lockdown regulations by not being home.
Monaiwa's face and body were still bruised and swollen, allegedly from the beating he received from the police as they drove around Soweto with him for four hours.
Yesterday Monaiwa was treated at a local clinic for his injuries. He said he was dragged to the state vehicle in front of his helpless wife and toddler before he was taken away for further beating.
"The gate was locked and we were sitting put at home when we suddenly saw blue lights flashing [outside] and got out to see what was happening," he said.
Monaiwa said a long convoy of police and army vehicles was patrolling in their street in the evening.
"As the vehicles approached my yard an officer swore at me and said I must get back inside the house."
Monaiwa said he "politely" told the officer that he had done nothing wrong as he was inside his yard.
He said two officers, a male and a female, got out of their vehicles, approached his gate and demanded that he open it.
After he refused, he said they jumped over and attacked him and his wife who had retreated into the house.
"The male officer began slapping me while the female threw my furniture around."
Monaiwa said he was pulled outside by his pants and his wife was ordered to open the gate. When outside two more police officers joined in with fists while an army person sjamboked him.
"I was forced into the back of the van and tortured for over over four hours."
Monaiwa said the police took him away from home after 9pm and drove around with him while beating him until one soldier told them to stop.
"I don't even know where I was but I was in pain the whole time. They dropped me home around 2am like nothing happened and gave me R160, that they had taken from the top of my fridge.
"I have suffered injuries on both my ears and eyes. Doctors say I may lose my hearing."
Monaiwa's wife Lydia said police officers at the Protea Glen police station refused to open a case for them yesterday morning telling them to stay in their home as the country is in a lockdown.
"They threatened to lock us up. We feel very violated; we demand justice from these bullies," she said.
Sontaga Seisa, the spokesperson of the independent police investigative directorate (Ipid) said an investigator has already been assigned to Monaiwa's case and would soon be in touch with the family.
The directorate is already investigating dozens of cases of police abuse, brutality including murder and several arrests of officers have already been made so far.
Report police and army misconduct at 0800 333 177 and 0800 222 091 respectively.
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