…By Roland Peterson for TDPel Media.
Buffelsdraai Landfill Site Temporarily Closed After Deadly Confrontation
The EThekwini Municipality has made the decision to temporarily shut down the Buffelsdraai Landfill Site following a tragic incident involving a standoff between security guards and waste pickers, resulting in the death of one picker and injuries to 16 others.
Authorities are investigating the incident as a shootout, which unfolded after the landfill site was invaded and set ablaze by certain members of the public.
The situation escalated when security personnel confronted the intruders, leading to a clash.
Lindiwe Khuzwayo, a spokesperson for the municipality, expressed the unfortunate nature of these events.
Upon receiving the distress call, Reaction Unit South Africa (RUSA) promptly responded to the scene to assist paramedics in transporting the 16 injured waste pickers.
According to Prem Balram, a spokesperson for RUSA, the victims claim they were searching for food and recyclable goods when security officers initially used rubber bullets, later switching to live ammunition from a shotgun.
RUSA medics arrived to find the deceased waste picker amidst a pile of garbage, having suffered a single gunshot wound to the chest.
It is alleged that the waste pickers had been disrupting operations at the landfill site in the past.
Balram highlighted previous incidents where scavengers obstructed trucks from entering designated dumping areas, forcing drivers to unload their cargo at the entrance.
There were also reports of drivers being held at gunpoint and compelled to empty their vehicles on multiple occasions.
As investigations continue into this tragic event, the temporary closure of the Buffelsdraai Landfill Site aims to restore order and ensure the safety of all parties involved.
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