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Violence mars anniversary party

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Violence marred celebrations to mark the fourth anniversary of Harsh Touch entertainment at Mountain View shopping centre in Lobengula West suburb Thursday evening.

Celebrations kicked off to a good start in the afternoon with a number of artists performing. Things only turned ugly around 6pm when rival gangs took over proceedings and started fighting.

Being an open-air event, it was almost inevitable that violence was going to break out as gangs were seen milling around, visibly drunk.

At 6pm, they started fighting, throwing stones at each other with community members cheering them on.

Some people had to seek refuge at Harsh Touch director Thulani Dube’s house which is opposite the shopping centre.

“I think we will have to switch off the music,” said a visibly worried Dube as the fighting continued.

One badly injured youth was taken to Dube’s house to avoid him being further beaten. The gang members “camped” at Dube’s gate.

The gang members later ran away in different directions when they heard word that somebody had decided to call the police.

Groups that had performed during the day included Best Warona, a kwaito dance group, New Age, a lady called Kadder, Naja and members of Harsh Touch Entertainment, with community members enjoying the free show. Unbeknown to them things would later turn unpleasant.

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