Mzimkhulu Nogampula, an anti-crime forum member from Bersheba, told GroundUp: “On Tuesday afternoon about eight of our members went to Enon location to find out why one of our members was klapped [ hit] by youth from that side. As we walked into the area, we were attacked with knives. I was stabbed five times in the head, arm and leg. Two of my colleagues were also stabbed, and one is badly injured and is still in hospital.”
A forum member who refused to be named said the community had to rescue them “from those thugs”.
“Two weeks back, we raided stolen goods here and we beat the suspects. We did not hand them over to the police because the police don’t come when we call them for crime,” said Pieter Maarman, chairperson of Enon anti-crime forum.
He said: “I was stabbed on Tuesday together with the members from Bersheba. I had to escape and went to hide in Bersheba. But I came back, and these boys came to my house this morning [Thursday] and insulted me and my wife. They even threatened to burn down my house.”
A youth, Martin Tshefu, said, “We are fighting back because this forum is abusing us for crimes we never committed. At least 17 of our friends were severely assaulted for no good reason. Most were severely beaten with sjamboks and knobkerries. They suffered broken arms and legs and head injuries. They pointed guns at us and then handcuffed us before taking us to Bersheba, where they took turns beating us.”