Cape Town’s popular Clifton Fourth Beach was abuzz with both local and foreign beachgoers on Friday when #ReclaimClifton protesters arrived and started singing.
Their presence was motivated by the recent reports suggesting that private security company PPA Security illegally removed people from the beach on the evening of December 23.
Deputy Minister of Police, Bongani Mkongi visited the beach on Friday to assure beachgoers that public areas such as Clifton are to be protected by the police and not by private security companies.
Cape Town Mayor Dan Plato was also present and said that in his view the beach was harmoniously shared by South Africans of all cultures and race groups.
The protest, which started out peacefully, grew tense as locals and animal rights activists vocally opposed the slaughtering of a sheep as part of a cleansing ceremony calling for the end of the exclusion of black people at the beach.
This led to a few residents clashing with the protesters after the animal was slaughtered in front of beachgoers.
“The offering of the sheep is calling on our ancestors to respond to our trauma at the hands of white people over the years,” activist Chumani Maxwele said on Thursday.
Another protest is reportedly planned for Saturday evening.