Swaziland police have admitted killing a man in their custody who they allegedly tortured, according to local media.
The 35-year-old Mozambican barber, Luciano Reginaldo Zavale, popularly known as Melusi, had reportedly been taken to Manzini police station to be questioned about a stolen CD writer.
The Observer Sunday newspaper reported (14 June 2015) that police were alleged to have made the admission to killing Melusi during a meeting with the deceased man’s parents and officials from the Association of Mozambicans in Manzini.
Police later denied making the admission. Swazi police Deputy Information and Communications Officer Inspector Phindile Vilakati told the newspaper, ‘We do take responsibility that he died in our premises but investigations are still ongoing to find out what really happened.’
Meanwhile, about 300 people demonstrated outside Manzini Police Station on Saturday and closed streets as they demanded answers to the circumstances of Melusi’s death.
Some people also went to Dups Funeral Home in an attempt to see Melusi’s body so they could examine the extent of his injuries, but they were denied entry.
National Commissioner of Police Isaac Magagula said he could neither deny nor confirm the allegations of torture, he said a post-mortem would be conducted to determine Melusi’s actual cause of death.
‘POLICE TORTURE SUSPECT TO DEATH’