Protesters burn down Eastern Cape municipal building

2014-09-23 15:06

A municipal building in the town of Kirkwood was set on fire during service delivery protests today.

Eastern Cape police spokesperson Warrant Officer Basil Seekoei urged motorists to use alternative roads and members of the public to avoid the town’s central business district.

Burnt tyres and wood were strewn along the main roads of the town, which is about 50km north of Uitenhage.

The protests began in the early hours of this morning, he said.

Rubber bullets were used to disperse the crowd.

“There were splinter groups and we had to control all of them simultaneously.”

Police were monitoring the situation. No arrests had yet been made.

Seekoei said the protest was linked to residents’ unhappiness with the municipality and service delivery.

He could not confirm that the residents were from Moses Mabhida township, which was about 5km away.

By midday some of the protesters were still in the CBD.

Democratic Alliance MPL Vicky Knoetze said the protest related to Sunday’s River Valley municipality writing off R84.5 million as irregular expenditure.

Knoetze believed that these funds were misappropriated and that there were irregular procedures followed especially in terms of tender processes.

The municipality could not be immediately reached for comment.

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