Benoni protest turns violent

2012-10-17 13:27

Johannesburg - A service delivery protest outside the municipal buildings in Benoni turned violent on Wednesday.

Several protesters hurled stones and sticks at police who stood cordoning off the building.

Police officers also fired rubber bullets.

Around 20 people were injured. Some were trampled on as those in front turned and tried to flee.

A few of the alleged instigators of violence were arrested and taken away in police vehicles and the crowds then dispersed.

Several cars damaged

As hundreds of them started their walk back to the informal settlements on the outskirts of Wattville, some protesters vandalised cars and shops along the way.

"I can't believe they did this," said one motorist who came out of shop to find his passenger window broken.

A Sapa reporter on the scene counted at least five badly damaged cars.

A man identified as the protest leader, Ezekial Mtungwa, walked behind the crowds.

"I am disappointed in them. This was not what we had planned," he said.
"I have told the police to take charge."

Mtungwa was part of a delegation that went into the offices to speak to officials from the housing department.

"We wanted answers... People have been waiting for houses for a while and instead, money is disappearing and nothing is being done," he added.

Children also in protest

They delivered a memorandum of understanding to the officials and said they were expecting a response within 14 days.

Hundreds of protesters from Emandleni, Emlotheni, Harry Gwala, and local hostels took part in the protest march, which started earlier in the morning.

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

Among the crowd were also children dressed in school uniforms.

Many of the protesters carried sticks, golf clubs, and knobkerries.

Taxis not operating

A police helicopter hovered above while several police vehicles cordoned off entrances. "We vote, but get nothing in return," said protester Ludwick Mavundla.

Meanwhile, workers and schoolchildren were prevented from going to or leaving the township, as large rocks were placed in the middle of the streets at the exits.

Taxis were also not operating.

"We don't know why they are including us in this," said a resident who identified herself as Sarah.

A letter circulated around the township on Tuesday informed residents this would be a peaceful march.

Are you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts

  • Cameron - 2012-10-17 13:32


      yrhonour.honour - 2012-10-17 13:39

      Definitely got my sympathy - not - while they are at it why not add a salary of R16.5k for turning up

      Kawasaki1985 - 2012-10-17 13:47

      Just the start ! cANCer has lost control and JZ again will remain silent !! Eish !!

      keith.f.murphy - 2012-10-17 13:49

      This is now a political stunami spring rising and keeps on growing bigger and bigger and spredinf around the country ans surely Zoom Zuma must be getting stomach cramps his poepsak must be farting where ever he sits or goes the idiot.This stunami will not stop

      heini.botes - 2012-10-17 13:51

      Anarchy and chaos is all they know. I want I want I want, I demand I demand I demand. Here's an idea....try working for what you want

      kala.bafazi - 2012-10-17 13:51

      Sticks and stones may break our cars, but the anc will kill you.

      scouter.fourone - 2012-10-17 13:56

      Anarchy is starting to set in .... the beginning of the end.

      lownabester - 2012-10-17 14:09

      Its easy for us to talk, these people are at their wits ends, They were promised the sun and moon, and now they see Zuma's life style. We should blame the ANC.

      hughfh - 2012-10-17 14:24

      I agree with previous comment. Everyone wishes the "masses" would wake up and realise the ANC are not delivering on their promises but when they complain (against the ANC nogal) en masse, the same people say they shouldn't. Huh? Let's support people like Ludwick Mavundla who appears to understand the link between his vote and the voted-for party's performance. The violence and destruction of property is a different issue that needs to be addressed with a firm hand.

      sani.ghana.3 - 2012-10-17 14:30

      These people must move to Nigeria or DRC they will be shot if they try these criminal behaviours there

      warren.rodel - 2012-10-17 14:30

      Yay - thats what you get:

      KennySven - 2012-10-17 15:05


      walter.tgsa - 2012-10-17 16:50

      I live in Benoni and was there this morning, lots of detours to get to where I needed to get to. But absolutely no sympathy for that lot, I wish the police had used more rubber bullets! Many business shut down, wonder how much that 'peaceful march' cost us all (including the cost for the police!)! What do those people think? They vote ANC, are not happy that they get nothing, and vote for the ANC again, idiots! Mr. Moeletsi Mbeki thinks that the manure will hit the fan by 2020, the latest. I think it will be much sooner...

  • irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-10-17 13:32

    Hey all you thugs! I also wanted a house so I got off my backside and worked for it. You should try it. Work that is. It's much more productive that throwing stones and destroying things.

      sarecen.smith - 2012-10-17 13:48

      a lady with some sense!

      jeremy.thewasp - 2012-10-17 13:55

      Yip - well said! The fact that 45% of my salary goes to PAYING for my house....I have to work damn hard to pay for it But hang on a sec - you were all promised houses if you voted for the ANC, even the Madams house was going to be yours..he ai wena?? Seriaaas! Wake up call!!!! ANC getting shafted proper! And we all sitting back saying....."Told you so"

      Erna - 2012-10-17 13:57

      There's lots of people with sense. Unfortunately they're not the ones living in shacks.

      lownabester - 2012-10-17 14:11

      Irene, where do they get jobs with our unemployment rate, The ANC promised jobs................where's that???? Nothing, nada, niks.

      phillip.vercueil - 2012-10-17 14:26

      Its only in the dictionary where money comes before work!

      warren.rodel - 2012-10-17 14:30

      ndou.miranda - 2012-10-17 15:12

      @Irene, you nailed it girl.

  • Desilusionada - 2012-10-17 13:35

    "I can't believe they did this," said one motorist who came out of shop to find his passenger window broken. I can. Easily.......

  • thabelorale - 2012-10-17 13:38

    "We want this, we want that for free". The can't repair shoes, they can't build their own toilets not even grow vegetables in garden.

  • heathway.master - 2012-10-17 13:38

    If I wasn’t working so hard to survive and make a living for myself and supporting my two, yes not ten, children, I would also have loved to join the queue and demand a free house, free rates and taxes, free electricity and free water. Further, as none of these people have ever in their lives paid a cent of tax, I would likewise love to live my life also without ever paying taxes. Just so much more money in my pocket for booze and the like. I also would not have to worry were all the money for my free house comes from. Aladdin will obviously rub his magic lamp, and whoosh, the rand notes will come out in an unending torrent. I guarantee, I certain percentage of the crowd are nationalised foreigners with South African ID Books and Passports,( Most obtained through bribes and corruption ) who have fled from some other basket case African Country. Also a nice bit of violence, mayhem and destruction is quite fun now and then, when all you can do all day is wait for the Government Welfare handout.

  • coenie.swanepoel.7 - 2012-10-17 13:45

    "We vote, but get nothing in return," . . . Maybe if you want things to change you should change your vote. Just my humble suggestion.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-17 15:13

      Why because the DA cares so much about black people? What has the DA done for Khayelitsha I wonder? Please man they wont get anything under white rule either the only difference is that now unlike under white rule the people are allowed to voice their dissatisfaction,although they are completely going about it the wrong way by vandalizing things, DA wont be their saving grace.

  • Mpotsiseng - 2012-10-17 13:45

    WHY WHY WHY WHY can't it ever be peaceful???

      Onke Mdingi - 2012-10-17 13:54

      Why can't they use existing machanisms like CCMA, Labour dpt... to formaly lodge compaints rather than STRIKING?

      Andrea - 2012-10-17 14:01

      that will help none, nobody in those departments work.

      freddie.miff - 2012-10-17 14:05

      Onke, they are not employees in dispute with their employer. They are unemployed rabble looking for a handout. They expect a free house because they voted?!? WTF!!

  • freddie.miff - 2012-10-17 13:46

    You did get something in return for your vote... the government you deserve.

  • sarecen.smith - 2012-10-17 13:46

    wonder where they stole the golf clubs

  • Andrea - 2012-10-17 13:46

    Yip, that's how you control your crowd, you "walk behind" them. Well done Ezekial, for letting the SAPS take over at least. Perhaps you should not have gone in the first place. "We vote, but get nothing in return". At least one of them is realising a truth. If only they can understand that all of this can and will change if they put their X in a different spot come the next election.

  • mandy.ferreira.773 - 2012-10-17 13:47

    Democracy in this country does not work... Try dictatorship.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-17 15:14

      I agree with that statement Mandy, if i was president,mhhhm!

  • Eterni80 - 2012-10-17 13:48

    Welcome to the newer new South Africa - proudly sponsored by ANC incompetence...

      klipkop.degroote - 2012-10-17 14:43

      proudly South African.....not at all! Lost that feeling long ago.

  • sammy.simegi - 2012-10-17 13:48

    Damn! And here I sit @ work!

  • ken.rowe.509 - 2012-10-17 13:48

    I waant it, I waant it. If you don't give it I will destroy and attack.

  • richard.lemmer1 - 2012-10-17 13:51

    BARBARIC !! Nothing more to say !

  • danny.vanvuuren - 2012-10-17 13:53

    hmmm....if I want a nicer house I have to work harder....harder than anyone one else because of the racism against my skin colour.

      Bradley Froud - 2012-10-17 14:22

      Indeed! Its Apartheid in reverse! Someone should come up with a word as did Verwoerd! There is no difference.

  • Brian Dorning - 2012-10-17 13:53

    ANC made promises in order to get votes...but they haven't delivered. People of SA want results and excuses like 'apartheid, Verwoed and the whites' are no longer acceptable. I'm glad to see progress from Black on White to SA citizens vs the government

      norman.buchalter - 2012-10-17 14:15

      hear hear well said. the citizens of the land are starting to speak the same language....

  • robynne.els.1 - 2012-10-17 13:53

    I really feel sorry for the people that get roped into all this nonsense but at the same time I think just dropping a bomb over violent protests!

  • mark.duplooy.10 - 2012-10-17 13:54

    vote for father christmas next time,maybe your chances of getting a anc t-shirt will be better than getting a house!viva golden lions!

  • wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 13:55

    The police should just shoot If these thugs throw objects that can harm, then THEY are the one's inciting violence, and it is the police's right to defend themselves and the civilians that are not striking.

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 13:56

      ^ Note, i didn't say shoot to kill...

  • Erna - 2012-10-17 13:55

    It's never what they planned, but it happens all the time. Why be surprised?

  • Bradley Froud - 2012-10-17 13:55

    Showerhead!!! STEP DOWN!!! This lawless country, is YOUR fault!! DOWN with cANCer!

  • Erna - 2012-10-17 13:56

    And all the president will do is 'condemn' it. What about some action!

  • zaahid.ismail.9 - 2012-10-17 13:56

    The News24 photo reflects the future of South Africa. Looks pretty bleak and scary to me. Think its time to consider alternate countries to go. It is sad though SA was the best country to live in the world.I guess sometimes miracles do happen. Lets hope for one

  • tony.naidoo - 2012-10-17 14:08

    Vote for the anc again! We will give you a t-shirt, polony sandwich and a jondol ! Viva anc viva! \r\nOh, and maybe another golfclub!

  • norman.buchalter - 2012-10-17 14:09

    At last some of the voters are getting upset with the governing party. Years of abuse of their rights and neglect is finally coming home to roost. You can lock them all up, but the 'disappearing money' not being spent on infrasrtucture and the poorest of the poor(amongst all other neglected citizens- my maid has waited 10 years for a house despite numerous requests and follow ups on her behalf.) is going to get you voted out of power. The people may be ignorant of what you do or don't do, they may be poorly educated in some cases- but they are not dumb. Your time of non delivery has caught up with you. We now call on you to deliver to all the people of South Africa and to stop the rot. Save yourselves the trouble and just resign en mass and let a decent , humane government that can deliver , take over. Fixing 2 potholes a year just before Xmas while your ministers spend almost 6 billion on travelling etc .... for about 200 ministers.- I a sure you can do the math. It's simple math literacy arithmetic.

  • johan.pienaar.144 - 2012-10-17 14:10

    What I always find funny they demand free houses as they cannot afford anything else but as sson as they receive an house they start building rooms and expanding the house. Seen some RDP houses converted to double storey houses in n matter of months.

  • elizabeth.bothma.58 - 2012-10-17 14:12

    So where is the Youth Leage now - condemning the bad service delivery the way they do in Cape Town?

  • francie.potgieter - 2012-10-17 14:15

    I will sue the union if it was one of my cars that were vandalized. If I were the police I would use real ammunition and not rubber bullets. Bunch of idiots.

  • dudley.futcher - 2012-10-17 14:17

    @Mphotiseng, I have asked myself that question so many times, but I think there is to many people in SA to little jobs so "Arab Spring" is upon us I afraid.

  • ndou.miranda - 2012-10-17 14:18

    Guys I know that our black government has failed us big time, but does this means I must also fail to improve my own life? I don’t think so. A 35 year old men or women who has 4 kids, wanting for a job to come to him or her, relaying on a child support grant that you and I are paying with our tax’s, which maintains them more then kids. I know a lot of you guys won’t agree with me on this one,( but that’s my opinion), why must the government give a 35year a house who can do so much to improve their life rather than vandalising shops and taxis?

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 16:11

      Why black? The government isn't black, the government is ANC

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 16:12

      I agree with your statement though, why is government helping people who can't even help themselves, and turn to violence and destruction? Easy votes...

  • renard.souza - 2012-10-17 14:19

    Uneducated thugs! That's the way they roll!!

  • native.rsa - 2012-10-17 14:22

    The masses can longer watch the minority live well while they are living in poverty

      andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-17 14:26

      that made no sense so rather shut it!

      barry.mcbride - 2012-10-17 14:37

      @Andrew: The masses can no longer watch the minority live well while they are living in poverty. There, I added one short word to make it easier for you.

      ajloubser - 2012-10-17 14:48

      Maybe the masses should stop watching while the minority live well and to what the minority do and that is work hard and study hard and stop expecting everything for nothing.

      andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-17 16:36

      AGREED AJLOUBSER,and when the majority become a party of the manority they will see why true hard working people get so worked up and angry over this cause ot the end of the day we are the slave labour working for them to get free housing! question answered!

  • andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-17 14:24

    shoot them, especially the kids that should be in school cause they shouldnt be there at all, if that is a education they choose over proper education then they must face the rath of what happens at a violent march! selfish,ungreatful, demanding, non-working trash!

  • andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-17 14:25

    just remember all you that are doing this voted Zuma into power and he has robbed you, not the white man, if anything we could make life much better for you with what we know!

  • david.maree.92 - 2012-10-17 14:26

    All the ANC do is about 6 months before election time they start giving and giving and then all is forgotten. No matter if they suffer for 3 years and then just before elections everything is perfect. Its actually genius. Might not trick me but sure will fool a lot of other people.

  • brendon.lieberz - 2012-10-17 14:29

    Why aren't these guys working like the rest of us to earn our houses.

  • patricia.dewet.92 - 2012-10-17 14:32

    Knopkieries are dangerous, bricks and stone are dangerous. Put them in jail if they carry these things. No intention of being peaceful. They will always stay in shacks, because they don't want to build a house and no reason for my tax money been spend on a house for these people. Keep voting for the ANC and your children will inherit your shack, because this is what you teach them, stay away from school, make babies and then demand.

  • mammudi.makgaleng.3 - 2012-10-17 14:33

    What do you expect in a Banana Republic where leaders use \Better life to all\ to get votes while they knew very well that they don't have strategies and plans in place to achieve that. Now people are tired of empty promises and they are sitting in Parliament and what they know and capable of is sending their foolish toy boys(police) to disperse the masses. Why can't they do the same as when they are looking for votes? Fortunately am not a police officer, can't abide to this kind of insane. Next time when you campaign promise people things that are achievable than a pack of rotten potatoes, because they gonna smell and this is the results of it.

  • lizette.wilsenach - 2012-10-17 14:35

    Perhaps if they were at work they could do some upgrading themselves

  • barend.vanniekerk - 2012-10-17 14:35

    lets start getting children like rabbits on heat in spring and become the majority......problem solved, i think we worryway to much about how we are gonna feed them. :p

      mammudi.makgaleng.3 - 2012-10-17 14:42

      That's way to satanic

      barend.vanniekerk - 2012-10-17 14:46

      satanic? :O the masses are satanic?

  • tiaan.truter - 2012-10-17 14:44

    animals...and no,I wont feel sorry for them.Because they voted for the ANC and they will AGAIN vote for them when the next election comes.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-17 15:19

      Tiaan does the DA care about black people? Atleast they vote ANC because they can somehow realte to the leaders,what has the DA done forKhayelitsha?

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 16:17

      Is Khayelitsha the only place in the entire country? So because your community doesn't improve, all the good work the DA has done doesn't matter? Please woman, wake up and stop making excuses. If you hate the DA because you think it's a whitey party, have the balls (or ovaries) to say so. Regardless of what the DA hasn't done, they have done a whole lot more of what they said they would than the ANC has.

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-18 07:24

      @ Wesley I wont dispute the fact that they have done alot for you guys,that's what they are there for, I'm just stunned that people expect the very people that the DA does nothing for to vote for them,lest they be called stupid.

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-18 09:17

      You guys?? Ja you see YOU are the problem, constantly separating yourself, making yourself seem different. You have a major race chip on your shoulder. Clearly you are insecure about your skin colour. Go see a psychologist and sort it out. Have you seen how many black people support the DA? How else do you think they got votes in the municipal elections? Your argument is flawed

  • native.rsa - 2012-10-17 14:45

    There is more to come people can't live under these conditions

      barend.vanniekerk - 2012-10-17 14:49

      i agree poverty is a horrible thing. We pay tax, we work for what we have, the government must get ways to fight poverty, the government is not doing it and embezzling the money. Thus blame your government. You call it logic

      barend.vanniekerk - 2012-10-17 14:51

      and forget about minority, majority, you can be purple, pink white yellow, even green, you work for what you have in life, and if you don't have the opportunities in life others had, blame your government.

  • bernard.heritage - 2012-10-17 14:45

    Pity about the acts of public violence, but hey this is South Africa, thats what they do here!! You cannot blame them for being upset with no service delivery & no housing, etc, especially when the ruling party continue to squander the tax payers money unhindered, R5Billion on partying alone & a president with an open cheque book, R600 million on roads to his private residence & R200 million to upgrade his private residence, talk about the gravy train, no wonder the whole country is such a big stuff up, what they havent already stolen, they are still working on.

  • native.rsa - 2012-10-17 14:48

    The masses will vote for ANC again as they should who else is there to vote for

      barend.vanniekerk - 2012-10-17 14:58

      you vote for a party who vows to change your circumstances as they care about its ppl. you dont keep voting for a party who obviously dont care.

  • masego.mahalefa - 2012-10-17 14:54

    let me start by saying i dont agree with this people vandalising other people's propoerty.people can protest,but it has to be done in a non-violent way,which is something clearly a lot of them dont understand.However, reading through some of the comments,we giving them names,Uneducated thugs,hooligans etc.we all entitled to voice our views.Lets try look at the root of the shall 1994 when ANC came into power,they promised people free Houses,free water,free education,free free free and people were excited.what did they do,Not enough,people have ran out of patience.Do we need change?Yes.but,because of the racial tensions in our country,Majority of black people are not yet ready to be led by a white person.hence we still see all unhappy people still voting for ANC,why?cause to-date,its the only Majority Black party that is capable of running a country(figuratively speaking).Only if you and i can start working in harmony to eliminate racial tensions,maybe then,only maybe,majority of black people will start believing that its high time we give a white person a chance to run a country,maybe even DA.till them,i think these is not going to stop,its only going to get worse

      lorain.maseko - 2012-10-17 15:21

      Masego do you frequent News24? Do you know the mindset of white people? and would you entrust them to have your best interests at heart?

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-10-17 16:20

      Jesus f**king christ lorain, you are the definition of racist. Carry on, generalising and stereotyping white people is exactly the same as what those moronic Nats did, just without the laws. Do not claim to know what each and every white/indian/coloured/black person thinks. Unless you are an all-knowing, all-seeing "god?"

  • thechrisberryshow - 2012-10-17 14:58

    hurling stick n stones can break their bones but rubber bullets and live ammo may kill you...

  • simon.mwando - 2012-10-17 15:01

    Welcome to South Africa

  • jerome.klassen.7 - 2012-10-17 15:10

    good job ANC f... this place up!!! please. we need to protest where zumaloema's house. inciting violence ne julius malema we can do it, zuma's and julius p... helps ppl not to get HIV

  • native.rsa - 2012-10-17 15:12

    @ Masego have a white person as president, never gonna happen, the chances of that happening is as much as England having a Black Prime Minister

      barry.mcbride - 2012-10-17 16:09

      LOL, England has much more of a chance of having a Black prime minister!