Foreign shop owners pack up after looting in Dunoon

2016-04-18 14:35
(File, Crime in Cape Town via Facebook)

(File, Crime in Cape Town via Facebook)

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Cape Town - Foreign-owned shop owners are packing up what remains of their wares on Monday, following looting during a housing protest in Dunoon.

Opportunistic criminals joined protesters on Sunday and in the early hours of Monday morning following unrest over housing, ward councillor Lubabalo Makaleni told News24.

Twelve people were arrested for public violence.

Just over a week ago, residents and members of the EFF's Western Cape branch protested outside the Cape Town civic centre and handed over a list of demands. These included land and housing, Makaleni said.

Residents were angered by a response to their memorandum on Sunday which said there was no land available.

A number of protests have taken place in Dunoon in recent weeks, following an attempted land grab in March.

Residents tried to set up structures on private property belonging to Greenacres farm.

On Sunday, residents took to the streets and broke into foreign-owned shops and containers, "stealing everything from clothing to food".

“This morning there was still stuff lying in the street,” said Makaleni.

He said the looting was not motivated by xenophobia, but was simply criminal.

"The thieves joined the protesters and took a chance,” he said.

While he condemned the violence, he said the lack of housing remained a burning issue.

“The area is overcrowded. The demand for housing is great here. Over the past four years there has been good development, such as the electrification of informal settlements, access to water and toilets and facilities such as two schools, a clinic and a library that is on its way.

“But we need to resolve this housing crisis quickly in Dunoon. It is a ticking time bomb and something that I prophesied.”

Police spokesperson Constable Noloyiso Rwexana said they remained on the scene to monitor the situation. Those arrested for public violence would appear in court once they had been charged, she said.

A MyCiTi bus terminal was also stoned and Potsdam Road was temporarily closed on Monday morning.

Metro Police and Public Order Police were patrolling main routes in the area.

Read more on:    cape town  |  housing  |  land  |  crime  |  protests

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