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By Bertus de Bruyn


Public service delivery protest in Mooketsi, Limpopo, gains momentum

A nearby garage and nursery school had to be closed as a result of increasing protest action that began yesterday.

Protesters have returned to R81 road along Polokwane and Giyani near Mooketsi, Limpopo, where they have barricaded the road with burning tyres, disrupting traffic flow, Letaba Herald reports.

Public service delivery protests, which began yesterday, have flared up again.

READ MORE: Chaos on N3 was ‘sabotage’ – Blade Nzimande

This time, protesters have barricaded the Lemondokop Road, which connects to the R81 road that leads to Giyani from Mooketsi.

Police say rubber bullets were fired after a delivery truck was burned by the protesters.

Photo: Supplied

Police are at the scene to try and calm the situation.

Motorists are advised to avoid the road.

Richard Ntlemo, the secretary representing the Mamolekhegu, community told the Letaba Herald this morning that the roads are barricaded.

Photo: Supplied

“We are currently in a meeting discussing the situation, but it is not calm as it should be,” he said.

The manager of the Mooketsi filling station, Amanda Espach, told the Letaba Herald that protesters took the keys of a BF fuel tanker blocking the road, about 300 metres from the garage.

“The police are currently negotiating with the protesters to return the keys to the driver. We closed the garage and the shop as a safety measure. We are afraid that they could maybe set the truck alight. The ZZ2 Tamatieland Nursery school is also closed and the children’s parents were told to go and fetch their kids. Stun grenades were thrown at the school earlier,” she said.

It is to be believed that some cars are allowed to drive through the barricaded road.

“Now and then we see a car past through, but others are blocked,” Espach said.

Spokesperson for the department of roads and transport Matome Moremi-Taueatsoala  says motorists are advised to use alternative routes if travelling from Mooketsi to Polokwane.

“The masses [gathered] due to lack of progress for upgrading the roads from gravel to tar (Mageva, Munghonghoma, Loloka, Mbhedlhe, Guwela, Kheyi, Mushiyani, Makhuva) as promised by the Limpopo Provincial Department of Public Works, Roads & Infrastructure CEO & MEC. Therefore, a total shut down has already begun. No school, no work, no transport in and out of Giyani,” Ntlemo explained.

“Motorists who want to travel from Polokwane to Giyani should rather use the R71 until the situation has calmed down as protestors have blocked the road,” Moremi advised.

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