A TOTAL of 23 people who have been arrested for allegedly taking part in a violent service delivery protest in the Masoyi area and are expected to appear at the Kabokweni Magistrate’s Court today (Thursday) for a formal bail application. The alleged protesters made their first appearance at the Masoyi Periodical Court on Tuesday where they were denied bail. The accused are facing public violence charges and were arrested a few days ago after they were linked to the violent service delivery protest.
“The protest turned violent with several businesses owned by foreign nationals being looted, with allegations of several motorists being charged a fee for passing through the barricaded streets. The R538 road between White River and Hazyview, also leading to the Kruger National Park’s Numbi Gate was completely blockaded,” said Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi.
Hlathi said police, together with the Local Municipality’s Law Enforcement Section, subdued the protest and removed the rubble as well as debris, in the process arresting the protestors. The Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service in Mpumalanga, Lt-Gen. Mondli Zuma condemned the vicious and unruly behaviour by some community members.
“It is of great concern that to this day we still have to deal with violent protests in our communities, we understand the need to voice out public concerns but being violent and disrupting the rights of others is a crime that will not be tolerated,” said General Zuma.