Etete residents protest over housing

2016-04-20 06:00

ETETE residents, fed up with housing promises that allegedly never materialised, took to the streets burning tyres and barricading the R102 demanding answers.
The service delivery protest, which started on Sunday night, came to a head on Monday night and continued into Tuesday when protesters blockaded the R102 between Etete and Groutville.

Umhlali SAPS spokesperson Vinny Pillay said on Tuesday morning an estimated 300 protesters were at the ‘second stop’ in Etete and were complaining about housing.

He said the protesters had blocked the R102 with tyres, trees and railings broken from the side of the road, adding that members of the police were in the area to monitor the situation.

Pillay said on Monday the protest in the area had been brought under control, however, on Tuesday morning protest action had erupted again.

One motorist who was attempting to enter Etete on Tuesday morning, said the protesters threatened to stone her vehicle if she did not leave the area.
Speaking to the Weekly on Monday, Etete Ward 7 councillor Gideon Mbonambi said residents were protesting due to a postponed community meeting regarding RDP housing which was scheduled for Sunday, 17 April. Mbonambi said residents were notified that the meeting was postponed until next week.
He said although the situation was tense, traffic was flowing in the area.

On Tuesday, KwaDukuza Municipality communications officer Sphelelo Ngobese said: “Although we may not fully be certain that this protest is a direct result of housing and settlement alone, we have prepared a report on the status of the housing project as we have reportedly heard that the [main] issue is housing delivery.”

He said council members and the municipality’s officials would meet with the protesting community on Tuesday afternoon to inform them on the status of the housing project.

“We are looking forward to a peaceful resolution following the anticipated engagement with the community,” said Ngobese.
At the time of going to press the protests were ongoing and council representatives were yet to meet with the community.

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