South Africa: Parliament to discuss police response and role of private security industry during looting

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“All registered companies are (or should be) aware of the law regarding the possession and use of firearms,” says Psira, the governing body of the private security industry. It comes as videos on social media show alleged private security guards shooting people during the wave of looting that rocked South Africa.

The parliamentary police oversight committee will meet on Friday to discuss looting and violence in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. Committee chair Tina Joematt-Pettersson said the meeting would focus on the police response to the ongoing violence. However, it is expected that “the role played by the private security industry as well as the South African National Defense Force will also be discussed”.

Joematt-Pettersson was answering questions posed by Daily Maverick about the role of private security companies during the unrest, which began last week after former President Jacob Zuma was jailed.

Videos, voice clips and images on social media show private security companies shooting people and blocking entrances to the suburbs. In one such widely circulated video, people in a van are seen yelling at people to come into their homes and then shooting. The name of a security company is visible, but it is not…

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