'One Indian, one bullet': Jackie Shandu to appear in court over 'racist' remarks
Jackie Shandu, the convener of a coalition of civic groups under the banner #JusticeForPhoenixMassacreVictims, is expected to appear in the Durban magistrate’s court on Tuesday.
Shandu, who was at the Durban Central police station on Monday after charges were laid against him, is facing charges of contravening the Riotous Assemblies Act and of incitement of public violence and racial hatred.
This comes after Shandu shouted “One settler, one bullet. One Indian, one bullet” to a gathering, who repeated the remarks after a march to the Durban city hall on Thursday.
The comments were unanimously slated by groups including the eThekwini municipality, KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala, the SA Hindu Maha Sabha, African Democratic Change, ActionSA and the DA.
At least two organisations have opened criminal charges against Shandu, including the Community Policing Forum and African Democratic Change.
On Friday, Shandu retracted the statement on Twitter saying he made “some problematic remarks which, with the benefit of hindsight, should not have been said”.
“I said ‘One settler, one bullet. One Indian, one bullet’. I want to withdraw those remarks because I don’t condone violence and I see the potential they have to sort of inflame already existing racial tensions.”
The coalition’s spokesperson, Phezukonke Mthethwa, confirmed to TimesLIVE that Shandu was expected to appear in court on Tuesday.
“The #JusticeForPhoenixMassacreVictims notes the abuse of the criminal justice system given the fact that Jackie Shandu was incarcerated without a warrant of arrest on level 1 charges, an attempt to silence those who are critics of skewed racial power relations. It is clear that there was political pressure to arrest hence the intent to add charges retrospectively.”
Mthethwa said his coalition would be present at court calling for Shandu’s release.
A petition started on Monday, calling for bail to be denied on the basis that Shandu allegedly uses an alias and is a potential flight risk, has about 2,000 signatories. The petition also urges affected parties to submit statements to the senior public prosecutor.
Meanwhile, Shandu’s appearance comes amid the expected appearance of three men arrested in connection with murder in Phoenix during the recent unrest.
Dylan Govender, 29, Ned Govender, 30 and Jeetendra Jaikissoon, 39, who appeared in the Verulam magistrate’s court on Friday, were remanded in custody until Tuesday for formal bail applications.
Their appearance in court last week was marked by a tense situation outside as police and army kept an eye on supporters of the accused, family and friends of murder victims as well as groups calling for justice in connection with killings in Phoenix during the recent unrest.
The court appearances and tension come as police minister Bheki Cele and KwaZulu-Natal premier Zikalala will hold a briefing on matters relating to the Phoenix violence on Tuesday.