Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

South Africa: Analysis - Never Forget Jan Rivombo

analysis

This month, Parliament will start deliberating whether Robert McBride is the right man to lead the country's police watchdog Ipid. The murder of 20-year-old fruit trader, Foster Jan Rivombo, allegedly by Tshwane Metro Police officers, should serve as an urgent and haunting reminder of what's at stake.

Foster Jan Rivombo sold apples and bananas to earn a living. He had a three-month-old son and an older brother - also a street trader - whom cared for him deeply. Jan Rivombo, barely out of his teens, was apparently a quiet young man who didn't smoke, drink or cause any trouble.

Last week, in a scuffle with Tshwane Metro Police Department (TMPD) officers on Bosman Street, Jan Rivombo was shot in the "upper body" and killed. As of Sunday night, not a single TMPD officer had been arrested for the crime. Four street traders who were caught up in that scuffle, however, were arrested for malicious damage to property and public violence, appeared in court and remain in jail. If, at this point, anger is starting to boil up inside your chest, take a deep breath and know that you are human and are reacting to a fundamental injustice....

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