Residents of the Princess informal settlement near Roodepoort protest on Albertina Sisulu Road (Formerly Main Reef Road).Residents are protesting a lack of housing and service delivery in the area. Picture: Wesley Fester 210114

Mankweng - Residents of Mankweng township and Thoka village in Limpopo embarked on service delivery protests on Monday.

The protesters used stones, timber, and burning tyres to blockade the R71 between Polokwane and Tzaneen.

Others barricaded a road leading to the University of Limpopo in Turfloop and obstructed traffic heading to the Mankweng Magistrate's Court, a Sapa correspondent reported.

Foreigners who own shops and other small business operators on Turf Road closed their shops as they feared looting.

Police fired rubber bullets to disperse one group.

The protesters were demanding that they be provided with electricity and taps in their yards instead of communal taps.

Those who did have taps in their homes complained about being inaccurately billed due to a faulty billing system.

“They must write off these debts 1/8and 3/8 start afresh with reliable meters. We are more than prepared to pay for services because this is a government we have elected. We are saying write off everything and we start afresh,” said community leader Makama Malebana.

Malebana claimed they had addressed the municipality several times but no assistance had been forthcoming.

Two months ago, the city and protesting residents agreed to the formation of a task team.

Malebana said the task team had been ineffective and was used by the council to silence residents.

Sapa