The National Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) has responded quickly and said that they will work to find those involved and lay down heavy charges.
The incident took place on the morning of Thursday 17th September 2020, Police were alerted of 100-150 people storming the Fairview racecourse situated in Port Elizabeth and assaulting the horses.
One horse has died during the riots
Police spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu has confirmed that many of those involved in the riot were previous employees of the Fairview Racecourse. Naidu has also confirmed that many of those involved were dismissed from the racecourse for harming the animals previously.
In response to the dismissal, the mob stormed on the racecourse early hours [6 am] to protest against the decision and alongside Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) related incidents.
Panga in hands, the mob ascended on the racecourse and started to assault and slash at one of the horses after they released them from the stables.
The horses were let free and force was used in an attempt for them to flee the property. Sticks and stones were also used against the defenseless animals.
Police spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu confirmed that a horse was found dead just a kilometer from the racecourse, it has been alleged that the horse was stabbed to death.
Disputes are being investigated
The claims of UIF grievances will be put forward to the Department of Labour to get a further understanding of the situation and how deeply these people were affected by their alleged ‘missed payments’.
Police investigation is underway and we await an update in the next few days.
“All the horses have been accounted for and the injured horses are receiving treatment by the Port Elizabeth Anti Animal Cruelty,” said Colonel Priscilla Naidu
“A case of malicious injury to property is opened and under investigation. Additional charges may be added. “
Police have also warned people spreading misinformation on social media may be subject to fake news offenses and could be prosecuted.
“Any person who publishes, distributes, discloses, transmits, circulates or spreads false information or fake news is guilty of an offence and may be prosecuted.”
DA responds to the brutality
The Democratic Alliance’s Provincial Leader of the Eastern Cape, Nqaba Bhanga has instructed that the people involved with the innocent killing of these animals must receive severe punishments.
“The DA is calling on the South African Police Service and the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, to investigate and ensure that those responsible are arrested and that the full weight of the law is brought to bare against them.”