Tembisa protesters in court

Eight-seven people, including women and children, will appear in the Tembisa Magistrate’s Court today on charges of public violence.

Police spokesperson Const Tebogo Sefing yesterday said the crowd threw stones at police and passing motorists. “They also did not apply for permission to stage their march, therefore that was an illegal protest,” said Sefing.

Sefing said a high-ranking officer who was hit by a petrol bomb thrown by protesters was still recovering in Tembisa Hospital.

Ekurhuleni metro police spokesperson Mveli Nhlapo said the Tembisa protests on Friday could cost the metro more than R150000 in damaged property.

“Robots and municipal dustbins were also destroyed,” he said.

Nhlapo said protesters looted and burnt a delivery truck carrying 14 beds.

“Two youths have been arrested for looting, but we are still searching for more suspects,” he said.

Ekurhuleni mayor Mondli Gungubele said he would be meeting with residents on Wednesday to discuss the supply of electricity in the area.

“The mayor will be listening to the people, to put their issues to rest,” said spokesperson for the Ekurhuleni municipality Zweli Dlamini.

On Friday thousands of angry Thembisa residents blockaded major roads in the township with boulders and burning tyres. Schooling was also disrupted.

Residents are demanding a direct supply of electricity from Eskom and the removal of prepaid electricity meters.

Community spokesperson Marylin Selamolela said she was disappointed by the brutal manner in which police treated protesters.

The police said on Sunday that the situation had calmed in the area.

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