South Africa: death at housing demonstration

A protester was accidentally killed during clashes between police and Soweto residents demanding improved housing conditions.

Submitted by jef costello on September 10, 2007

Almost twenty years after the end of Apartheid and thirteen years after the election of the ANC residents of the township of Soweto feel they have been left behind. Promises of wealth sharing have proved hollow, with any redistribution of assets seeming to end up in the hands of the emergent black middle class.

Residents are demanding the improved housing and infrastructure that they were promised and that the ANC government has failed to deliver. Police reported that they were forced to used tear gas and rubber bullets after hundreds of demonstrators became violent and injured two journalists with bricks and stones they were throwing at police lines.

The victim was accidentally run over by a bread delivery van, police have yet to release details of whether this took place before or after they began to fire upon the crowd. They have announced the arrest of seven 'suspects' during the demonstration.