Angry service protesters loot foreign shops
SHOPS belonging to foreign business owners were looted in the West Rand townships of Fochville and Wedela following ongoing disputes between the Merafong Local City Municipality and its disgruntled residents.
Yesterday, scores of residents from the Merafong townships outside Carletonville, which include Kokosi, Wedela and Khutsong, took to the streets to demand the dismissal of their municipality under Maphefo Mogale-Letsie.
This was the second protest in less than 30 days.
The initial march took place last month, when lists of demands were handed over to officials representing Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Pravin Gordhan and Gauteng Human Settlements, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Jacob Mamabolo.
The situation turned ugly when police fired rubber bullets and sprayed teargas while residents were trying to block the N12 between Potchefstroom and Joburg.
The protesters, including pregnant women, burnt tyres on the road leading to the highway.
Four pregnant women were among those arrested.
The women said they had decided to participate in the protest actions due to the lack of service delivery in their areas.
Five- months pregnant Sheila Nkosi said: “We had permission to march to the municipality, but we were blocked by the police. We were in different taxis transporting us to the municipal building when the police stopped us. They then ordered us all out of the vehicles and opened fire on us.
“Some of the police realised
Police fire rubber bullets in second wave of protests
there were a number of pregnant women in our group and they ordered all of us to get into one of the taxis.
“We complied. Later, they arrived and started assaulting us for no reason,” Nkosi said.
Abe Malefo, one of the organisers and secretary of the Merafong Progressive Partners Forum, denied that their intention was to block the N12.
The police said the march was illegal. Captain Tsekiso Mofokeng said some protesters destroyed municipal property in Kokosi when the police dispersed them.
“Police fired rubber bullets when they resisted to leave,” he added.
FIERY END: A forensic officer inspects an accident scene where a van collided with a motorbike in Olievenhoutbosch yesterday.