Police dispelled rumors of live ammunition being used on residents protesting against ANC’s decision to present Thoko Didiza as the party’s Tshwane mayoral candidate divulging instead, that the Tshwane protesters are the ones using live ammunition to loot shops.
Colonel Noxolo Kweza related that a group of protesters used live ammunition while trying to break into a shopping mall in Mamelodi.
They were shooting at the padlock used to lock the entrance of the shopping mall. “We immediately responded and the crowds dispersed…We hear that there are reports that we are using live bullets. That is not true,” Colonel Kweza commented.
The situation is similar in Mabopane. The residents troubled the police as they massively looted shops throughout last night.
SABC reported that a local bakery supplying residents bread every morning was one of the businesses that were set alight by the protesters.
Gauteng police has issued a statement condemning the criminality involved in the protest.
Lt General Deliwe De Lange disclosed that cases of murder, malicious damage to property and intimidation have already been opened, and warned that anyone found committing crime will be arrested immediately.
“So far, the province has established a joint operation centre that will manage policing in these areas. The centre will consist of role-players from all law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders. All police members including those who are on rest days have been mobilized and will assist with policing in these areas. These members will also include members from the divisions at head office,” read the statement.
Meanwhile. opposition party DA has rebuked ANC for attempting to dismiss the severity of the violent protests and regarding the Tshwane protesters as opportunistic criminality and thuggery.
“This shows total disregard for the clear message from ANC supporters leading the protest. The violence in Tshwane is undeniably political in nature, but the ANC refuses to accept responsibility for the actions of its members.
The President, and Leader of the ANC, is yet to make a public statement condemning the violence or even to call for calm,” DA stated.