South Africa: Witnesses to Deadly Johannesburg Fire Might Be Deported - South African News Briefs - November 29, 2023

Omar Arafat holds a photo of his sister Joyce Arafat. Her whereabouts after Thursday’s fire in a building in Johannesburg City Centre were unknown at the time the photograph was taken.
29 November 2023

Cape Town —  

Inquiry into Johannesburg Fire 'Unaware That Some Witnesses Might be Deported'

The commission of inquiry looking into the deadly Marshalltown fire says it is not aware that some prospective witnesses stand to be deported, EyeWitness News reports. In August, a fire ripped through a five-storey building in the inner city of Johannesburg, killing over 70 people and displacing hundreds more. At least 32 undocumented migrants who stayed in the building are detained at the Lindela Repatriation Centre, pending the outcome of a legal battle to stop their deportation. The commission's spokesperson, advocate Thulani Makhubela, said if some survivors who might be listed as witnesses are deported, "it would then be upon us to see how important evidence from that person is. We will basically cross that bridge when we get there." Makhubela said the inquiry, which was postponed indefinitely due to safety compliance issues, might proceed with its work in the first week of December.

Parliament Sanctions MPs for Breaches of Ethics Code

Parliament is taking action against some wayward MPs, eNCA reports. The National Assembly adopted reports of the joint committee on ethics and members' interests. It has resolved to suspend former transport minister Dipuo Peters for a full Parliamentary term. This is for transgressions during her term as Transport Minister. The EFF's Floyd Shivambu has been docked nine days pay for failing to disclose payments made to him. The Assembly has also ordered police minister Bheki Cele to apologise to Action Society leader, Ian Cameron. Cele shouted "shut up" at Ian Cameron during a crime imbizo.

Two Men Escape Facebook Marketplace Scammers

Two men, who were left wounded after a shootout with a gang of Facebook Marketplace scammers, made a desperate 50km drive to hospital to save their own lives, Iavan Pijoos writes in an exclusive News24 report. Bruce Moller and his friend, Leon Verne, of Johannesburg's East Rand, were lured into a trap on November 7 when they responded to an advert for a bakkie for sale in Winterveld, Pretoria. The attack played out days before former Pretoria Rugby Club chairperson Jaco Basson was shot and killed. His death is one of a raft of incidents of people being lured to Winterveld by the gang.

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