Rocks, cement pieces send marchers scattering

2012-05-15 18:00
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

DA march turns violent

A DA march for a youth wage subsidy in Johannesburg has turned violent, with Cosatu members storming the march and rocks being thrown by both sides, reports say.

Johannesburg - Rocks and pieces of cement flew when supporters of the DA and Cosatu came head to head at a protest in Johannesburg city centre on Tuesday.

Police used teargas and water cannons to disperse Congress of SA Trade Union members who stopped the Democratic Alliance from protesting outside its headquarters.

The DA were insisting Cosatu stop stonewalling a government youth wage subsidy that, it says, will create thousands of new jobs for young people.

The DA march, headed by leader Helen Zille, youth leader Makashule Gana, parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko and national spokesperson Mmusi Maimane, began peacefully.

However, as the protesters turned into Jorissen Street in Braamfontein they were met by toyi-toying Cosatu members moving down the street from Cosatu's offices, opposite the Joburg theatre.

For an hour, the two groups traded insults with a cordon of police keeping them apart.

When rocks and pieces of cement were thrown into the crowd during Zille's speech and a DA member on the VIP truck was seriously injured, the DA retreated to Jan Smuts Avenue.

Cosatu members chased DA supporters and police had their hands full trying to control groups intent on hounding the blue-shirted protesters out the area.

Police eventually sprayed teargas and fired a high pressure water gun to break up the Cosatu crowd.

Several car windows were smashed and at least two people were injured by flying bricks and rocks.

Zille delivered her speech in Xhosa and English, saying that the DA was marching in solidarity with unemployed South Africans. Cosatu was keeping people out of work and locked out of the economy.

"We all want to live lives that contribute to society. We all want to support ourselves and our families. We all want to ensure that our children have more opportunities than we did," she said.

Giving more South Africans the chance to work was essential ingredient for the nation to prosper and heal the wounds of the past, she said.

Practical

Zille said the DA had proposed the wage subsidy programme for young people as a practical and realistic way to include the youth in the economy and create jobs.

The subsidy could create 400 000 first time job opportunities for young South Africans.

"We believed in it, and we were thrilled when many others did too. Many economists, academics, analysts and even many in the ANC government, including the president, have supported it," she added. The only impediment was Cosatu, which was using its power to block the subsidy's implementation.

A few blocks away at Cosatu House, Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi told a crowd that a youth wage subsidy would use workers' tax money to enrich company bosses and had to be opposed.

"What will happen is when workers get old? Bosses will throw them into the street and replace them with 18-year-olds receiving a subsidy," Vavi said.

Cosatu has said before it was concerned the subsidy would be used by employers to cut costs, by doing away with established jobs in favour of cheaper youngsters, who were eligible for a subsidy.

Vavi added that youth receiving the subsidy would not receive a full wage, which went against Cosatu's principles.

"We demand equal pay for work of equal value," he said.

In a statement, the DA's Kate Lorimer said there were not enough police and metro police officers present at the protest.

"It seems though as if the cops were unprepared and it was only after the stone throwing that the police finally sent in a police vehicle to block the Cosatu attack."

- SAPA
Read more on:    cosatu  |  da  |  mmusi maimane  |  helen zille  |  makashule gana  |  kate lorimer  |  lindiwe mazibuko  |  zwelinzima vavi  |  johannesburg  |  protests  |  labour
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
59 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Wine
 

You HAVE to see this MTB Tsunami Fip!

You might not know what a Tsunami Flip is, but just watching this will turn your eyes into saucers. Check out this first-ever MTB Tsunami Flip in contest here.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Bear Grylls’ top 10 things kids should do outdoors
Mountain unicycling – say WHAT?
Top tips to ensure you’re running right
Stand-up paddle boarding a great workout

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Deal of the week!

20% off Afrikaans books, music and DVDs. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Hot gaming titles – available for pre-order!

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Day Zero Edition, Far Cry 4, Grand Theft Auto 5 and more. Pre-order now!

Get a free eBook

Buy 3 eBooks and get the cheapest FREE. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Power and leadership are emphasized today. It is important to strategize and delegate well otherwise you may end up with too much...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.