Residents protesting in Hammanskraal have dismissed the claim by South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) that the EFF is behind the Hammanskraal protests, blaming them for inciting illegal land occupation in the area.
The spokesperson for Sanco, Jabu Mahlangu, pushed the entire blame for the Hammanskraal protests on the EFF, accusing the party of encouraging the illegal occupation of land.
“The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) must take responsibility for encouraging illegal occupation of land, subsequent violent confrontation and loss of lives,” said Mahlangu on Monday.
However, residents spoke in defense of the EFF saying the allegations are not true.
“There is no EFF influence here. There is no one wearing any political shirt or affiliated to the EFF,” an anonymous resident said who shifted the blame to poor performance of the government.
“The reason things are like this is because government is failing to deliver. If EFF is behind this, did they call the Red Ants on us? We want Sanco to explain that to us maybe we can understand,” the resident added, while pointing out that the EFF has no power there as the ward was one of those controlled by the ANC.
Besides, another resident added that they were put on the land by members of the ANC within the area, which made him wander why they were now trying to put the blame on someone else.
“This is just a strategy for them to win votes. They must not blame someone else for their actions,” he said.
Violence broke out on Monday in Hammanskraal when a company under the contract of the Tshwane Metro, the Red Ants, began to carry out demolitions and evictions.
In the process of protesting two of its workers were allegedly attacked and killed and others injured. But, the company denied this claim.
Tshwane Metro police say they are handling the situation. While five people have been arrested for public violence, they are also meeting with the disgruntled community to sort out issues.