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Engen condemns attack on petrol attendant

No arrest has been made in connection with the assault of a petrol attendant an Engen garage in eMalahleni at the weekend. Police say they are following all leads in an apparent racially-fuelled attack on a petrol attendant, which was caught on camera. 

In a video clip from the shop’s security cameras a black petrol attendant, Michael Ntuli*, is seen being attacked by a group of white bikers around midnight on Friday.  

Ntuli told the Mail & Guardian that the fall-out started outside when he asked two men not to smoke at the pumps and then later requested that they move to a different pump. “That was when one of the men started swearing and calling a k***r and a monkey.”

The altercation soon escalated into a fist fight that saw about four men beat Ntuli up inside the shop. The brawl was eventually broken up by police and a case of assault was opened. 

‘Shocked’
Engen responded to the incident on Wednesday. Gavin Smith, group spokesperson, said the company is “shocked and appalled by the assault of a petrol attendant” and that counselling has been offered to Ntuli and “other staff members who were on site on the night of the incident”. Ntuli has since returned to work. 

“Footage of the incident has been handed over to the South African Police Services,” said Smith. “Engen condemns the incident in the strongest possible terms.” 

*Not his real surname

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Ina Skosana
Ina Skosana was a health reporter at Bhekisisa, the Mail & Guardian’s centre for health journalism, from 2013 to 2017.

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