Teen killed during South African anti-graft protests
April 24 2018 04:50 PM
A police officer restrains a protester during protests in Mahikeng, in the North West province, Sout
A police officer restrains a protester during protests in Mahikeng, in the North West province, South Africa, on April 20.

AFP/Johannesburg

South African police on Tuesday said a teenager was killed in a fresh round of anti-corruption protests which forced the president to cut short a foreign trip.

Riots over alleged government corruption and poor public services erupted last week in the North West province, where cars were set ablaze and shops looted in the first wave of unrest to face President Cyril Ramaphosa, who came to power in February. 
"A 16-year-old boy was found dead during a violent protest yesterday evening in Taung," provincial police spokesman Sabata Mokgwabone told AFP.
The police watchdog have opened a murder investigation.
After prematurely returning home from a Commonwealth summit in London on Friday and going straight into talks with local provincial leaders, Ramaphosa appealed for calm and promised a "speedy" resolution of the crisis.
Following a lull over the weekend, new protests broke out on Monday -- this time in Taung town, 300 kilometres (about 200 miles) from the provincial capaital Mahikeng which was the epicentre of last week's protests.
Police fired teargas and rubber bullets during clashes with the protesters.
The North West province has been a hotbed of unrest due to frustration over lack of housing, health services and jobs.
Much of the anger has been directed at Supra Mahumapelo, the provincial premier, who is accused of involvement in graft scandals that have engulfed the ruling African National Congress party.
He is accused of diverting 1.5 million rand ($120,000) from government coffers to buy cattle for former president Jacob Zuma.
His son allegedly received a 1.1 million rand pilot-training bursary from the state arms manufacturer under suspicious circumstances.
Ramaphosa, who took over from Zuma three months ago, has vowed to crack down on government corruption. 



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