Africa

Mido Macia: Funeral in Mozambique for taxi driver

The funeral for Mozambican taxi driver Mido Macia gets under way in Matola
Image caption Thousands turned out for Mr Macia's funeral in the city of Matola

A taxi driver who was found dead after he was dragged behind a police van in South Africa has been buried.

Mido Macia, who was 27, was laid to rest in his native Mozambique. Thousands gathered for the funeral in Matola, near the capital Maputo.

Video footage of Mr Macia being dragged behind the van caused widespread revulsion when it emerged last month.

On Friday, nine South African policemen were charged with murder over Mr Macia's death.

Mr Macia's wife and parents were among the distraught mourners at Saturday's service.

"I am sad because my son died and I do not have another. He was the last of my children," his mother Juanita told the AFP agency.

Many present expressed anger towards those responsible for Mr Macia's death.

Shocking video

Friday's hearing for the nine policemen had been postponed from Monday to allow time for state witnesses to confirm the identities of the suspects.

The court was told on Friday that Mr Macia had suffered extensive injuries, culminating in hypoxia - a lack of oxygen supply to the body - causing his death.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionPolice Commissioner Riah Phiyega: "The behaviour displayed in the video... is to be abhorred"

The video, apparently recorded by a bystander on a mobile phone, shows a large crowd watching as uniformed policemen tie him to the van, dragging him as they drive away.

The video shows Mr Macia struggling with police after apparently parking his vehicle illegally.

Police officers then overcome the taxi driver and tie him to the back of a van by his arms before driving off.

Former South African President Nelson Mandela's wife, Graca Machel, herself Mozambican, joined hundreds of mourners at a Daveyton sports stadium on Wednesday.

Wednesday's emotional ceremony saw mourners, many wearing t-shirts and holding posters printed with Mido Macia's photograph, joining together to sing, clap and dance.

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