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A “drive slow” protest against e-tolling came to a stop on the N12 near Soweto on Thursday afternoon as protesters left their cars to sing and dance beneath a gantry.
The impromptu demonstration by about a dozen people was disrupted when police roped in a tow-truck to remove the vehicle parked in front of the convoy.
A traffic officer shouted at them: “You cannot stop a car in this road.”
A Congress of SA Trade Unions protester jumped out of his vehicle and tried to stop them from attaching a chain to the car.
“No guys,” he shouted as the car was lifted to be towed away.
“All we ask is for you to move. Nothing else,” an officer responded.
Protesters and the police quarrelled about whether the car was being damaged as it was hastily towed away.
“They are towing us and the police are trying to create another Marikana,” protester Thabo Mokgopela said. He was referring to the shooting in Marikana, North West, on August 16, in which 34
striking mineworkers died and 78 were wounded when police opened fire on a group of protesters.
The anti-toll protest was on the N12, on the way back to central Johannesburg.
A second convoy was on the N3, headed to Katlehong near the N12. Only one lane of the highway was open to traffic as more motorists joined the protest.
Both groups were returning to their starting points, moving at 20km/h.
The Cosatu-led protest was to show opposition to the government's plans to toll major highways around Johannesburg and Pretoria. - Sapa