Arrests after Western Cape protest

2012-09-11 09:01
A service delivery protest (File, Sapa)

A service delivery protest (File, Sapa)

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Cape Town - Twenty-six people were arrested during a service delivery protest at a Touws River informal settlement, Western Cape police said on Tuesday.

Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut said the group would appear in court once charged.

"The situation is under control with no further acts of violence this morning [Tuesday]. However the area is being monitored," he said.

Hundreds of Zion Park residents gathered near the N1 highway from 05:00 on Monday, burning tyres and throwing rocks.

The Cape Times reported that a portion of the highway remained closed until 14:00 on Monday as rocks had to be cleared from the road.

Community leader Michael Visagie told the newspaper residents were promised housing and other services at a community meeting last week.

"We are prepared to die. We will not stop protesting until our demands are met. We were promised formal houses, flush toilets, tarred roads, electricity and running water and we want these promises fulfilled."

Breede River Valley municipality manager, Gerrit Matthyse, said the protest was largely due to residents' frustration at being on a housing waiting list for 20 years. About 25 000 people were on the list.

He said 10 hectares of land had been earmarked for low-cost housing by the council, which had been in power for a year.

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