By Wardah Wilkinson
The case of a Bo Kaap youth arrested on charges of public violence appeared today at the Cape Town Magistrate court and matter was postponed until next month. The 17 year old was arrested in June, after he was a bystander during the protests in the area. A small group of Bo Kaap youth protested daily during Ramadan, burning tyres and blocking entry into Wale Street as part of a campaign against gentrification in the area.
His attorney, Ighsaan Higgins said they engaged with the court in order to have the charges dropped or have the charge changed from public violence to that of “attending an illegal gathering”.
Higgins said they are negotiating to prevent the child from being criminalized. The matter has been postponed to the 28 August, in order for the legal team to make representation.
Higgins expressed disappointment with the lack of community support at court, given the huge public outcry over the teenager’s arrest.
“The turnout was disappointing. It was just the child’s father and the legal team present at court. I want to urge the community to make an effort to support members of the community when they in trouble with the law. Especially when there activism is related to the community,” said Higgins. VOC