Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures
Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

WATCH: N2 burns during electricity protest

By Zodidi Dano Time of article published Sep 25, 2017

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Cape Town - While most of Cape Town celebrated Heritage Day, hundreds of residents from an informal settlement near Sir Lowry's Pass Village took to the streets to protest over the lack of electricity.

The violent protest forced the closure of the N2 near Strand between Broadlands and Hazeldene Roads. 

Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

The roadway was barricaded with burning tyres and debris and protesters also broke down traffic lights and stoned passing vehicles. 

Video: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

 "There is a high presence of police and traffic," Provincial Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said. "The  N2 will remain closed until further notice. Motorists need to use alternative routes when driving from Sir Lowry's Pass to Cape Town and visa versa."

At least 19 people were arrested for public violence.

Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

Mayoral Committee member for Safety and Security; and Social Services JP Smith said more than 500 residents protested.

Two city council vehicles were damaged, two traffic lights were broken and three city council workers injured.

Video: Supplied/City of Cape Town

"The complaint is over electricity that has not been supplied to that area. This however, is not a city council problem as Eskom supplies electricity that side. 

"We know that there is an electricity roll-out that is in the process and the residents have been told about this. The damages incurred by this protest means money is unnecessarily wasted because all these things will have to be replaced," Smith said. 

Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

Ward 81 councillor Simthembile Mfecane said although the roll-out had been carried out in some parts of the informal settlement of Uitkyk, there were problems with the names on the list.

"It was discovered that some names on the list of of people who live in formal housing and that is causing the delay," he said.

Picture: David Ritchie/ANA Pictures

The supply of electricity was causing friction between residents in formal housing and those in informal settlements. 

"People from the informal settlement connect their wiring to the big Eskom poles and that often causes electricity cuts for those living in formal houses," he said.

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Cape Argus

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