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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Four arrested after three trucks are torched in Dunoon protests

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Cape Town – Three trucks were torched in Cape Town, one on the N7 near Richwood and two at the Potsdam Road bridge near Milnerton as protests raged on for the third day on Monday.

The protests over land were mirrored in nearby Dunoon, where residents also took to the streets.

At least four people have been arrested in Joe Slovo in connection with the unrest in the area.

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Police spokesperson Noloyiso Rwexana said the situation remained volatile in both areas.

“Public order police and other law enforcement agencies are monitoring the situation. The protesters are burning tyres.

“Two trucks were torched today on the N7 and Potsdam road is closed to traffic. Four people were arrested in Joe Slovo for public violence and they are expected to appear in court. Cases of malicious damage to property were opened,” she said.

According to Joe Slovo resident and community leader, Noxolo Mayeki, residents were promised flats on an open piece of land back in the 90s, but those promises were not fulfilled.

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“Residents are now saying they have no money for rent, as they haven’t been working since the lockdown started. They said they were told the area would now be turned into a flea market and they are not happy about that.”

Mayeki said the residents said they will not benefit from the flea market as they needed places to stay.

“While we sit here we are seeing the flea market grow and grow each year, while many have no place to stay,” he said.

Dunoon ward councillor Lubabalo Makeleni said some were making money off the land that was being protested over.

“There is a group of residents that is hijacking a piece of land and then they sell the land to poor people.

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“Then there are those that are genuinely looking for a place to stay. We don’t agree with what they are doing, they sell the land from R10 000 to as much as R16 000,” Makeleni said.

Mayco member for Human Settlements, Malusi Booi, said the City was unable to comment on residents’ claims that flats were promised to them.

“In general, the City continues to look at suitable well located land for accommodation purposes across the metro.

“Specifically in this area, the circumstances and suitability of each piece of land would be determined. Open land is not necessarily automatically for housing. All due process must be followed,” Booi said.

He added that the City removed illegal structures at Dunoon at the weekend.

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