10 people held in N Cape protests

2012-06-21 19:21

Bloemfontein - Ten people have been arrested during violent service delivery protests in Olifantshoek, Northern Cape police said on Thursday.

Police spokesperson Captain Cherelle Ehlers said four of them appeared in the Kathu Magistrate's Court on public violence charges and were released on bail.

She said another municipal councillor's house was set alight on Wednesday night.

Spokesman for the Gamagara local municipality, Kamagelo Semanai, said the house of the executive mayor of the John Taolo Gaetsewe district municipality, Sophia Mosekatse, burned down.

Mosekatse and her family were not home at the time.

"They are safe and they are doing fine," Semanai said.

Police were investigating a case of arson and public violence. Police questioned several people in connection with the arson case.

The house of the Gamagara municipal manager Charles Phuti was also damaged when it was set alight on Tuesday, apparently by protesters. The town had been plagued by protests since the beginning of the month.

The protesters wanted the immediate resignation of Gamagara executive mayor Maria Diniza and her council.

A spokesperson for the residents, Sheperd Mines, said earlier they were protesting over a lack of basic service delivery and unfulfilled promises of employment at mines in Kathu.