PRESS STATEMENT: A Call to the eThekwini Municipality: Do not buy Casspirs
We are outraged at the plan for the City of Durban to purchase militarised vehicles to deal with protests by the people of the Durban. This marks an alarming and unacceptable escalation of the local state’s increasingly repressive and intolerant response.
The protest actions themselves highlight the deep crises and challenges that we need to be facing together as a community with compassion and inclusion. What is needed is respect for the concerns, freedoms and dignity of the people. What is needed is the effective and immediate deployment of skills focused on listening, on peaceful negotiations and inclusive dialogue. What is needed is to seriously address the root causes of inequality, exclusion, patronage, elite indifference and arrogance that lie behind people’s protest actions. Continue reading
Shackdwellers movement Abahlali BaseMjondolo has slammed the purchase of casspirs by the eThekwini municipality saying this amounted to the militarisation of the metro police department.
The organisation was reacting today after The Mercury carried a story revealing that the city is in the process of purchasing four casspirs at a total cost of R19.9 million.
The casspirs, being purchased from state-owned arms manufacturer Denel, will be used for crowd control and to deal with riot situations. Last night the city provided more details, saying the casspirs will also be used in land invasions.
“These vehicles will assist the Metro Police to carry out their duties while ensuring effective policing for crowd management deployment to ensure the safety of police members in riotous situations when rocks or petrol bombs are thrown,” said eThekwini spokesperson Tozi Mthethwa in a statement.