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At least 45 die in S/Africa’s troubled provinces – Officials

At least 45 people have died in relentless violence and looting in South Africa's troubled KwaZulu Natal and Gauteng provinces,…

At least 45 people have died in relentless violence and looting in South Africa’s troubled KwaZulu Natal and Gauteng provinces, officials said on Tuesday.Speaking a day after President Cyril Ramaphosa deployed the army to assist the police to cool down the two provinces, KZN premier Sihle Zikalala said 26 people have been killed in his province since the violence erupted last Friday. 

“As a province we’re going through a lot of pain and difficulty,” Zikalala said.

He added: “We must work hard to prevent our province from descending into the dark days of our violent past.”

Gauteng premier David Makhura put the number of deaths linked to the violence in his province at 19. 

“These include one police officer who was killed in Soweto,” Makhura said.

In addition, over 700 people were arrested overnight in the two provinces where the cost of damage was described as more than US$70 million.

Ramaphosa said on Monday night he had deployed the soldiers to assist the police, who have been overwhelmed by the scale of the rioting and looting.

The people are demanding the release of former president Jacob Zuma from prison, a case he has taken to the Constitutional Court on Monday to have his sentence rescinded.

The apex court, however, adjourned after a ten-hour hearing from both sides of their views as regards Zuma’s imprisonment.

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