We were only preventing looting from taking place, Phoenix resident tells SAHRC

Sham Maharaj on Tuesday appeared at the investigative hearings into the riots where 36 people died in what is believed to be racially motivated attacks.

Mr Sham Maharaj from Phoenix Ubuntu Forum gives testimony on 16 November 2021 at the SAHRC hearing into the July riots. Picture: SAHRCommission/Twitter

DURBAN - A Phoenix resident testifying at the South African Human Rights Commission hearings into the July unrest said that residents were only defending their area.

Sham Maharaj on Tuesday appeared at the investigative hearings into the riots where 36 people died in what is believed to be racially motivated attacks.

But while testifying on what happened at the time, Maharaj said that they were only preventing the looting from taking place.

“You could see what was happening and everyone panicked because the messages that were being put out were that, ‘your street, your house is next’, so what options do you have but to turnout and make sure that nobody comes to do anything funny?”

WATCH: Day 2 of SAHRC inquest into July riots