IOL: Heavy police presence in Orange Farm

Burnt tyres block Golden Highway
February 23 2010 at 11:02AM

Protests against poor service delivery continued along the Golden Highway on Tuesday with police closing the road and then re-opening it shortly after 10am, Johannesburg metro police said.

Chief Superintendent Wayne Minnaar said the Golden Highway had again been closed after protesters burned tyres and blocked the road with rocks.

While the road was later re-opened, he advised motorists to use the N1 as an alternative route.

Police were keeping a close eye on the situation where angry residents pelted police with stones and burnt tyres on Monday.

Protesting Orange Farm residents began demonstrating at around 1am on Monday and around 3pm the 1500 residents started pelting police with stones and damaging their vans in the process.

Police retaliated by firing teargas and rubber bullets and arrested 30 people for public violence.

A metro police official was sent to Lenmed hospital in Lenasia, south of Johannesburg after he was injured on his leg during the protest. – Sapa

Heavy police presence in Orange Farm

By Lebogang Seale and Kim Tshukulu, 24 February

Residents of Orange Farm, south of Joburg, continued to wage running battles with the police on Tuesday morning as they tried to intensify their protest action over alleged poor service delivery.

Drieziek Extensions 1, 3, 4 and 8 of the township – where most of the violent protests have been concentrated – appeared to have been calm early on Tuesday morning following Monday’s incidents. But shortly before 8am, a crowd of disgruntled residents marched through the streets towards the busy Golden Highway and again barricaded the road with burning tyres, rocks, logs and road signs. Police had to fire stun grenades, rubber bullets and teargas to disperse the crowd that was quickly swelling as more and more residents joined in.

For a moment, the police appeared to have managed to keep the protesters at bay, but time and again, incidents of looting were reported on some stores in the settlement. Scores of people, including children, were arrested on charges of public violence and malicious damage to property.

The busy highway was opened to traffic shortly before 10am and the police were maintaining a heavy presence.