News24

Ekurhuleni to tackle service delivery

2012-10-17 22:28

Johannesburg - Ekurhuleni municipality has vowed to tackle the services grievances of residents highlighted in a protest march in Benoni on Wednesday.

Mayoral spokesperson Zweli Dlamini said the municipality would act with haste, and called on residents to be patient.

"We appeal to the concerned community leaders to take charge of the situation and work with us as we look at the issues, so that together we can find long-lasting solutions to the concerns," he said.

Hundreds of people from the Emandleni, Emlotheni and Harry Gwala informal settlements as well as the local hostels marched to the municipal buildings to demand housing and better service delivery.

"Until when will we live in shacks", read some of their placards.

The demonstration turned violent when some protesters began hurling stones and sticks at policemen who cordoned off the building.

Police officers retaliated with rubber bullets and about 20 people were injured.

The mayor's office said residents were within their rights to march, but criticised them for looting and vandalising vehicles and property.

Parts of the Benoni CBD were left in ruins as the protesters made their way back home from the municipal offices.

Disruptions

Dustbins were overturned, garbage bags torn open and cement litter bins were uprooted and thrown onto the streets.

A Sapa reporter on the scene counted at least five badly damaged cars and several broken shop windows.

"We were [told] that this would be a peaceful action, but what we saw was a complete opposite," said Dlamini.

The mayor's office also criticised the disruptions of schooling as scores of youngsters joined the march, many of them in their school uniforms.

"This was really uncalled for and irresponsible, in the sense that children will soon be writing their final examinations," Dlamini said.

"In actual fact, matriculants start their exams in a few days and they are writing what can be best described as their most defining school examination."

Workers and schoolchildren from Wattville who were not taking part in the march were prevented from leaving or entering the township.

Rocks, tree trunks and tyres had been placed in the middle of the roads, preventing motorists from passing. Taxis were also not operating.

By late afternoon, most of the debris had been moved to the side of the roads and motorists were making their way through. "The situation remains tense with a heavy police presence monitoring the areas," said Dlamini.

Comments
  • wesley.nel.5 - 2012-10-18 05:28

    Why tackle it, isn't that the basic function of a municipality. Just do your work. Question to the people that toitoi. If you have a vote, why do you toitoi and burn everything. Make a plan and vote for somebody else. Easy

      mc.segal.5 - 2012-10-18 05:43

      Wesley Write todays date on a wall somewhere Check in six months time. Situation wont have improved.

      walter.tgsa - 2012-10-18 07:20

      Isn't this just great! These people loot shops, trash the Benoni CBD and vandalise vehicle and now, they get rewarded? There is something seriously wrong her!

  • nicolas.gombert.16 - 2012-10-18 05:46

    Well Mr Major, if this is what it takes to wake you up, there will be more protest marches coming your way. Nothing like a little disturbance to get your lazy bum moving. Maybe you should start by finding out what your officials are up to during working hours, many of them are double-dipping: getting paid by the Metro and then doing private work on the side, using their metro-paid-for vehicles, even using Metro workers and Metro materials. I stood in the bank and a senior Metro cop walked in with at least R200 000 IN CASH! Where does he get the money from? Ekurhuleni must be the best paid metro where you can do nice, private work during working hours. Maybe a little means test is in order?

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-18 07:49

      He had a very good tutor; Robert Mcbride ring a bell ??

  • Hemlock - 2012-10-18 08:31

    hahahahahahahahahaha.....which century!

  • Andrea - 2012-10-18 09:27

    Oh dear, hope the municipal workers don't go on strike because "why do we have to clean up what we didn't throw down". At least it only lasted a few hours, however one of my staff informs me that a man known to him was killed in Wattville as a result of this march, yet we hear nothing of that. I am sure authorities would like the general public to think there was no incidents of loss other than damage to property and cars.

  • ingrid.oberholzer - 2012-10-18 11:29

    Liar, Liar pants on fire!!!! Elections are coming up so we will tell you what you want to hear.

  • Siya Sadam Gumede - 2014-03-25 15:17

    seach for uhuru movement-south africa on facebook now to learn about what you should do on these situations.

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