Cops condemn violent water protests

2012-05-08 14:19

Mbombela - Mpumalanga police have condemned the violence in recent service delivery protests in the province.

In a statement on Tuesday, Lieutenant Colonel Leonard Hlathi said offices and an earth-moving machine were set alight during protests in Lillydale, in the Bushbuckridge municipality, on Monday.

Nine people were arrested for public violence and arson.

Residents had been demonstrating their dissatisfaction over municipal water, which they said was unfit for consumption.

The nine would appear in the Calcutta Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

Hlathi said the arrests followed the sentencing last month of Division Zungu, 32, Bhekisisa Gule, 34, and Sibusiso Lukhele, 21, for instigating a service delivery protest in Driefontein, near Piet Retief.

"They mobilised community members to barricade roads in the area, obstruct the entrance to a local mine, damaged the mine property and looted shops belonging to foreign nationals," he said.

Zungu was sentenced to eight years in prison, Gule to four years and Lukhele to two years.

"Police management in the province believe the sentencing of the trio will serve as a deterrent to those who take part in and instigate violent protests," he said.

  • Peter - 2012-05-08 14:36

    So MR ANC fatcats, you dont deliver, people complain... you still dont deliver, people protest... and you continue to not deliver and then you throw them in jail. So people of SA i guess you have one choice. VOTE FOR ANYONE BUT THE ANC... seems simple lets see what the outcome is soon

  • bmhadebe - 2012-05-08 14:42

    Who said burning down buildings and people's houses solves anything? *in passing*

      Dennis - 2012-05-08 14:50

      Just what I was thinking !!!

      Peter - 2012-05-08 15:39

      @bmhadebe - they have another option? they could wait for election time but then they would still be drinking unfit water for awhile...

      Matthew - 2012-05-08 16:15

      I actually agree with @Peter on that one.But even so,look at how protests used to go if organised properly. Non-violent protests,Hunger strikes,and the people were heard.why cant people just protest honestly for their voice to be heard. These guys have cause and reason,but not for violent destruction,burning down buildings,attacking foreigners. Mention the protest and everyone is keen for their own selfish reasons,not for the original cause (thats what i see anyways) i mean,if they didnt destroy so much stuff (buildings,roads,shops etc) then it would take alot quicker for their demands to be they have to fix the crap they broke and then get to to the water.

  • Herman - 2012-05-08 15:45

    It does, this is the only language that government officials understand. if you do not destroy and stage a peaceful protest, I can guarantee you, without doubt that there wont be any kind of respond. I know what I am talking about.

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