Violence erupts near Springs

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iol news pic PM_Election VOTING Springs INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Police Officers order residents of Everest informal settlement in Springs to move away from the polling station if they are not voting. Picture: Sharon Seretlo

Johannesburg - Residents of the Everest informal settlement outside Springs threw stones at passing motorists on Wednesday night, prompting police to chase after them.

Two roads leading into the settlement were closed off by police before 9pm.

Police chased the stone-throwers with two police Nyalas. No arrests had yet been made.

Residents were also burning tyres on the main road that passes through the township.

By 9pm, the voting station had not closed as people were coming in slowly.

There were no queues at the voting station throughout the day, apparently because people were being intimidated.

“I'm scared for my life,” said voter Nokuthula Dlamini earlier.

“I don't know how I'm going to sleep tonight because they threatened to attack us at night.”

Earlier, a group of residents threatened a night attack on voters.

A youngster, who gave his name only as Sipho, said: “We are not voting. Those who vote, we are going to find them at night.”

Protesters had called on residents not to vote, citing their living conditions and demanding the release of people arrested in protests in the area earlier this week.

In the nearby Gugulethu informal settlement, a Transnet building was torched on Monday and 46 people were arrested for public violence.

Police tried to calm an early morning protest by imploring people to save it for another day and rather go and cast their votes.


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