The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) is investigating 49 cases of alleged police heavy handedness against citizens during the first two months of the hard lockdown in March and April last year.
This was confirmed in Police Minister Bheki Cele’s written reply to DA MP Andrew Whitfield’s parliamentary questions.
In addition, six members of the public were alleged to have been killed by the police.
The IPID input into the reply stated nine people were killed but an investigation revealed two had died of natural causes.
“Furthermore, in the Vosloorus case, the suspect that was linked to the death was a member of [a] private security company. Therefore, there are six where police are linked to the cases alleging death as a result of police action,” IPID said in the reply.
Four of the deaths happened in Gauteng while three took place in the Western Cape.
Most cases of brutality were reported in the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, at 13 and 11 cases, respectively. Gauteng registered seven cases.
Meanwhile, on Whitfield’s question of case backlogs, IPID said it had a backlog of 8 088 cases as of the end of January.