South Africa
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Minister Thandi Modise details how special task force members rescued them from hostage drama

Cape Town – Defence Minister Thandi Modise has described the dramatic scenes behind the hostage drama when she together with the Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele and her deputy Thabang Makwetla were kept in a hotel room for three hours against their will by military veterans.

Modise gave a blow-by-blow account of how the police’s elite task force members had waited before storming the room, and told everyone to get on the ground before they arrested the suspects.

Modise said they had been stuck there for hours before the drama unfolded as police moved in.

“Did the police use stun grenades, I cannot say to you yes or no. I was in the room. The rooms were barricaded, they had to try and open those doors. What they used I don’t know,” Modise said responding to a question.

“Ma’am, have you ever watched a hostage movie. It’s always dramatic, the tables are always turned upside down not because they hit people with them, but because they are taken out of the way so that if you clear the room the victim can get up and run,” she said.

“It’s because when we heard those loud bangs we went down like we do in the movies and in the planes when they say brace, we braced and that is what happened,” Modise said.

“If there are burns in the carpets and the tables were upside down, I don’t know if it’s in my place to apologise, it happened and people were saved. I can assure you that I have been long enough in MK to know that no bullet was fired in the room while I was there. I do know there was enough restraint amongst the protectors. Nobody was touched.”

Police Minister Bheki Cele earlier confirmed that Special Task Force members used stun grenades to storm the building.

Also involved in the rescue operation were the National Intervention Unit and the Tactical Response Team.

Political Bureau