Mamelodi East residents, the informal settlement near Mahube were attacked this morning due to fighting over a cable, leading to many people injured and some losing their homes. The attackers burned down shacks, tires and blocked the road during the protest. One of the community members said the community members from the informal settlement had an argument with those who live in “bond” houses earlier before the strike about the cable that they allegedly used to steal the electricity from them and resulted in the protest and the attack. The houses of residents in Mahube Valley Extension 11 were also burned by residents from the shacks and it is not yet known how many houses and shacks were burnt that day. The reason being that the attackers complain that they pay rent including water and electricity yet they still have a shortage of electricity. The victim said they were attacked this morning (12 am) while they were sleeping in their homes. There were people in the community who were going door to door to make them aware of the attack and telling them to run away from their homes. Many people in that area evaded to the mall, somewhere on the street not knowing where to go and others were reported injured.”I didn’t know what to do to help those who were injured, they are in hospital as we speak, some were injured from running away from rubber bullets whereas some were injured from running away from the attack”, said the community member. It is not yet know how many people were injured and where they were taken. Apparently, it is said that informal settlement residents were given 3 hours to move from the area. The statement is not yet confirmed. Members of the community say the police later arrived at the scene and started shooting (rubber bullets). It is believed that the attackers had guns during the protest. Few people in the area had moved out with their belongings this evening to avoid the conflict whereas many of them are currently in their homes. It is not yet known when the issue will be resolved. The police spokespersons, Captain Michel Mbewe (Mamelodi East police) together with Captain Johannes Maheso (Mamelodi West) are attending the matter at the moment. The police who are currently in the area are expecting the protest to take place. The police have been operating in the area since this morning, 5am.
By: Fortunate Machaba