Tembisa shutdown: Death toll climbs to four

The Ekurhuleni Metro Police Department (EMPD) has confirmed that two more people lost their lives during the Tembisa service delivery protests on Monday.

The two bodies were found near the Customer Care Center, where the Municipal Center was set on fire. This brings the death toll to four, Newsroom Africa reported.

The cause of death is unknown at this stage.

The first and second deaths were reported this morning, after protesters were caught in the crossfire between officers and other demonstrators.

Angry Tembisa residents blocked several roads around the community with burning tires and rocks on Monday in a community shutdown.

A number of city vehicles, including the municipal offices, were also torched during violent protests and occasional reports of looting.

Members of the public have been demonstrating since Sunday night, completely blocking Hospital Road.

This is a deafening silence over their pleas for help with service delivery challenges.

Premier David Makhura condemned the acts of violence and lawlessness displayed by the residents.

“We recognize that residents have the democratic right to express their grievances. However, communities need to express their grievances in a constructive way. The violent and destructive nature of these protests is unacceptable,” said Makhura.

“We would like to send our heartfelt condolences to the family and loved ones of the deceased, our thoughts are with them.

Ekurhuleni mayor Tania Campbell also called for immediate calm to be restored in Tembisa.

“Citizens have the constitutional right to protest, however acts of arson and vandalism to public infrastructure will not be tolerated. Last week, I delegated five Members of the Mayor’s Committee to engage residents on the memorandum they submitted to the City. Unfortunately, that meeting ended without a resolution.”

Campbell said she would liaise with the Premier of Gauteng Province through the intergovernmental relations channels to develop a co-ordinated approach to the government’s impasse.

“As a Multi-Party Coalition, we are concerned that the demonstrations we have seen in Tembisa are no longer community-based, but a well-orchestrated operation to control the town out of control.”

“We believe the current destruction of public infrastructure is politically motivated and intended to undermine the progress of the new administration,” Campbell said.

Campbell has urged Tembisa residents to remain safe and trust that law enforcement authorities will restore law and order in the area.

READ MORE: WATCH: Tembisa extinguished – Second person killed in protests

Additional reporting by Faizel Patel

Tembisa shutdown: Death toll climbs to four Source link Tembisa shutdown: Death toll climbs to four

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