Hundreds of Bekkersdal informal settlement residents rose on Wednesday to march to the Westonaria Local Municipality. The protesters were met by the police officers who had to fire rubber bullets to stop them.
The community complained that after 25 years of democracy they still didn’t have access to power despite lengthy talks with Eskom.
“For years we have been promised electricity and this has still not materialised. Budget had been allocated and yet people are looting. We want the councilor to answer,” one of the residents explained.
According to the residents, they only wanted to voice their problems and get answers from the government.
“We were promised that before the elections about 2,500 units would be installed in informal settlements, however, today there is no electricity, there’s not even a response from the municipality,” another resident said.
It is reported that some children joined the protesters instead of going to school.
The police’s Mavela Masondo urged the public to avoid the area barricaded by the protesters. About 15 police vehicles were on stand by to control the crowd.
— Siphumelele Khumalo (@Siphumelele_K) April 10, 2019