Refugee lays assault charge

Paul Nsambwa a refugee from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), has laid a charge of assault against a security guard at Cape Town's refugee centre after being beaten and treated in hospital on November 23. 

He had an appointment on the centre’s fifth floor and had to go through an entrance 50 metres away from the main entrance, dubbed the ‘white entrance’, because a security guard, known only as Johnson, swore at him and denied him entry. Security at the second entrance allowed him through and he walked back to the lift, which is directly inside the main entrance.  
Told he must go back to the DRC, Paul then was sworn at by Johnson, severely beaten with a baton, stamped on and throttled until he fainted, while an angry crowd watched.
Other officials laughed while he was being beaten. The security guard also warned Paul that if he returned he would kill him. Johnson then threw Paul Nsambwa´s unconscious body out of the main entrance.
Nsambwa later said: “I have never been beaten like that, I have come here to save my life and I am now afraid again.”
A PASSOP volunteer, Melissa, called an ambulance and he was taken to Somerset hospital where he urinated blood and was treated for shock. He was later escorted to the police station where he laid an assault charge against Johnson.  
This was the first time in the history of this Cape Town refugee centre that an undocumented/illegal immigrant has laid a criminal charge against a security official. This saddens me because this is definitely not the first assault I have witnessed there.  
It is also clear that Operation Umbrella has begun – with arrests of refugees increasing rapidly. There have also been reports of police working in the immigration offices, a clear sign the exercise is under way.
We will hold a protest outside Parliament in Cape Town on December 3. We appeal for all Zimbabweans and concerned people in the UK to consider protesting outside the South African embassy in London. It is up to us all to apply the pressure required to stop this ongoing mistreatment.  
Meanwhile, Adonis Musati´s body was due to be repatriated on Monday. I thank all who contributed for their “Chichemos” or contributions.
Braam Hanekom
If you would like comment or to assist in any way email: [email protected] or write to PASSOP, P.O. Box 39511, Capricorn Square, 7948

Post published in: Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *