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By Itumeleng Mafisa

Digital Journalist

WATCH: ‘We are tired of not being listened to’- Emfuleni mayor held hostage

The residents prevented the mayor from going to work on Thursday morning.

The community of Tshepong near Sebokeng held the mayor of Emfuleni Local Municipality, Sipho Radebe, hostage on Thursday forcing him to listen to their complaints.

The Citizen understands that the residents were complaining about blocked stormwater drains and poor roads in the township.

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‘We are not abusing the mayor’

A voice note circulating on community WhatsApp groups said the roads in the area are so bad that pregnant women gave birth at home because the ambulance could not access their homes.

The residents prevented the mayor from going to work on Thursday morning.

“We are not abusing the mayor, but we are tired of not being listened to,” a frustrated resident said.

A video showed the residents singing in protest over the lack of service delivery.

Spokesperson Mphikeleli Msibi told The Citizen the mayor was a councillor of that ward, which is why the residents were demanding answers from him.

“The residents raised several issues relating to service delivery in the ward. However, the specific encounter on the morning of 11 April was about the Tshepong entrance. The entrance has a water blockage due to heavy rain and sewer spillages,” he said.

Municipality steps in

Msibi said after engagements with the community members, their anger subsided and the situation was under control.

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“The executive mayor remained on site with the members of the community. An excavator was deployed to unblock the entrance so that there could be a free flow of traffic.

“Engineers were also present to conduct an assessment in the area to find a lasting solution to the problem. The team will brief the ward councillor and community members in about any developments undertaken,” he said.

Meanwhile, DA MPL Kingsol Chabalala said the municipality had left residents with no choice but to resort to violence to force the municipality to deliver services.

“I think this is an indication that residents have had enough of this municipality that is failing to give them services,” he said.