Protest turns into political stand-off

2009-11-02 00:00

A SERVICE delivery protest turned into a stand-off between ANC supporters and protesters in Mpumalanga township in Hammarsdale on Saturday.

The residents of Phumlani Area in Mpumalanga’s Ward 6 were marching to Ethekwini Metro offices in the township when more than 200 ANC supporters wearing ANC and SA Communist Party T-shirts, started toyi-toying inside the metro offices gate and blocking the entrance.

About 100 marchers led by an IFP leader in the area, Victor Dladla, could not enter the metro offices to deliver their memorandum. Dladla said the march was not a political party protest, but a protest by concerned residents.

“We came here to raise our concerns as a community about the lack of service delivery. We applied for this march and were given permission. What the ANC is doing in standing in our way is against the law. Firstly, they do not have permission to hold a protest, and they are preventing residents from exercising their right to protest.” Dladla said the ANC supporters were transported to the metro offices earlier in the day to disrupt the march.

The Phumlani residents said the local councillor has failed to provide them with basic services. “About six years have elapsed and the residents of Phumlani have no electricity, water and toilets, despite the promises that were made to them,” said Dladla.

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