Transport Minister Blade Nzimande condemned the protest action that led to the arrest of four truck drivers for public violence on the N3 in Van Reenen on Monday.
"The drivers used their articulated vehicles to block off both the south-bound as well as the north-bound carriageways. During the [blockade], two trucks were set alight," Colonel Thembeka Mbele said in a statement on Monday.
The protest action, which was allegedly started by the drivers, was diffused by officers from the Uthukela cluster station and units as well as the Newcastle Public Order Policing Unit.
"We do not know what the protest action was about," Mbele told News 24.
Police impounded the four trucks.
Eyewitness News reported that the minister met with the National Truckers Association on Friday to listen to their grievances, which include wage gaps and the hiring of foreign nationals.
"The minister commended the law enforcement agencies for their swift response in arresting those responsible for this malicious act who seek to undermine efforts by government, and truck drivers' associations who are committed to resolving this matter within the ambit of the law," Department of Transport Spokesperson Ishmael Mnisi told EWN.
The suspects are expected to appear in the Ladysmith Magistrate's Court on Tuesday on charges of public violence.
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