- Civil society groups are coming together to march to Durban City Hall in KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday
- They seek justice for the countless lives that had been lost as a result of the murders that took place in Phoenix amid the riots
- The organiser of the coalition between the civil society groups, Jackie Shandu, believes the bereaved families deserve reparations
DURBAN - Several society groups are planning to march to the Durban City Hall in KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday under the #JusticeForPhoenixMassacreVictims banner in an effort to seek justice for the people who were killed during the riots in the suburb of Phoenix.
Over 120 people are said to have been killed in Phoenix as racial tensions were on the rise during the looting that took place in the weeks past. It has also been reported that there are bodies in the Phonenix mortuary that have yet to be identified.
Jackie Shandu, the convener of the coalition of civil society groups, believes that families who have lost loved ones in Phoenix should be compensated and deserve justice, according to a report by SABC News.
“We were at the Phoenix Mortuary yesterday morning and they confirmed that 74 people have died from this senseless slaughter of innocent unarmed non-violent victims. 43 bodies are yet to be claimed by their families, including foreign nationals,” said Shandu.
Acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni confirmed that a total of 20 arrests have been made in connection with unrest-related murders in KwaZulu-Natal, IOL reports. Five of those arrests were in relation to the murders in Phoenix.
An additional three arrests were later made in relation to the Phoenix murders, bringing the number to a total of eight arrests according to Politics Web. The seven of the suspects appeared in court on Monday while one of the suspect's case has been remanded until 16 August.
MEC dismisses reports of bodies piling up in Phoenix Mortuary in Durban
Briefly News previously reported that the National Funeral Practitioners Association stated that undertakers in mortuaries in KwaZulu-Natal are overwhelmed. This is due to the rapid flow of bodies being admitted following the civil unrest in the province and Gauteng.
The riots and violence ended up in the deaths of 22 people in KZN alone. The Association stated that there are more than 300 unidentified and unclaimed bodies that are in storage in mortuaries in Phoenix, Durban.
Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu has since dismissed the claims, stating that there were 128 bodies and not 500.
During an interview with eNCA, Muzi Hlengwa of the Association stated that the mortuaries in Verulam and Phoenix have reached their capacities. Hlengwa explained that the maximum capacity of the storage facility in Phoenix is 500 bodies.
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