Protesters close roads
They say they want their municipality to improve sanitation, provide water and electricity
RESIDENTS of Roodepan and Jacksonville informal settlements near Kimberley yesterday barricaded roads in protest A lack of service delivery in the area.
They said they want their municipality to improve sanitation, provide water, electricity and stop the looming evictions.
The roads between Roodepan and Kimberley were closed from morning until midday when the police moved burnt tyres and trees from the road.
Burning tyres and trees were used to close down the area as the community members called on Sol Plaatje mayor Mangaliso Matika to come and address them.
Police in Kimberley yesterday had to clear the road leading to Roodepan following protests over service delivery there. Community leader Samuel Papier said they will continue to bring Kimberley CBD to a standstill until their demands were met.
He said they did not want Matika to send anyone to them but rather come himself and give them answers.
“We have been told that the mayor will not be coming to address us, our main complaint is service delivery, for three years we have been without water, our complains have fallen on deaf ears.
“We are going to continue to close the road until the mayor comes and address es us, we need services in our areas,” he said.
Papier said they did not want to disturb schooling and traffic but were forced to do so because of the nonresponsiveness of the municipality.
“We want the municipality to address our situations need. We are people even though we are staying in informal settlements,” he said.
One angry resident said the attitude they were getting from the municipalities was uncalled for.
“We are disappointed at the manner in which the municipality is treating us, they do not care about us. If they cannot service us they must just tell us so that we can see for ourselves how we go in. They call themselves our leaders but they are not even showing up.
“We want them to come and remove the bucket system which is making our lives difficult, we have young children who will end up getting sick with the buckets that are not being taken,” she said.
Meanwhile the police had to use rubber bullets to disperse the crowd who were closing off the R31 and Seleke roads linking Kimberley, Roodepan and Galeshewe.
Police spokesperson MajGen Dimakatso Mooi said the police were called on to the scene following road closures by community members since the early hours of the morning.
“We are here to monitor the situation and ensure that the roads are opened for traffic to flow. The roads are closed apparently because of the issues in their informal settlement,” she said.
Mooi said the police were going to remain on the scene until the situation has calmed down to ensure that everything was back to normality.
Heavy a police presence from Galeshewe, Roodepan and Kimberley was patrolling the areas and calling on community members to refrain from putting stones on the road.
Efforts to get comment from the municipality were unsuccessful by the time of going to press.
DRASTIC ACTION: Roodepan and Jacksonville informal settlement residents yesterday barricaded roads in protest of lack of service delivery in the area.