North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo. FILE PHOTO: ANA

Mahikeng - Sporadic protests broke out in the North West after the provincial African National Congress (ANC) leadership said beleaguered Premier Supra Mahampelo had been persuaded not to resign as he had previously announced.

A handful of protesters barricaded roads with burning tyres in Montshioa on Wednesday night.

Mahumapelo announced on Tuesday, that he would resign Wednesday by midday. However, he made an about turn, saying the ANC provincial executive committee (PEC) wanted to first discuss the issue.

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The PEC announced after the meeting that the premier, who faces allegations of corruption, was no longer resigning and had instead taken "leave of absence". North West Finance MEC Wendy Nelson was appointed acting North West premier.

On Thursday morning the protests continued. Residents in Montshioa and Seweding set tyres alight in response to the ANC's decision.
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North West police said burning tyres were placed on roads in Montshioa, Dr James Moroka road in Ramosadi, Bray road in Seweding and N18 road in Magogwe. 

"No people or groups were at these places, but only burning tyres. We are urging the public to assist the police to identify those are doing this so that necessary action can be taken," said Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone.

Anti-Mahumapelo protests, which began last month have often turned violent. Shops were looted and roads barricaded.

The protests started on 18 April in Montshioa and spilled to other villages around Mahikeng, the provinces capital city which was locked down for three days. Protests also erupted in other parts of the province.

African News Agency/ANA