Department releases staff as a precaution in Tshwane
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Johannesburg - Staff at the head office of the Department of Trade and Industry in Pretoria were released to go home at lunchtime on Tuesday as a precaution after violence broke out against the selection of senior African National Congress (ANC) member Thoko Didiza as mayoral candidate for the metro.
DTI spokesman Sidwell Medupi said most staff members lived in affected areas such as Mamelodi, Attridgeville and Hammanskraal and were released so that they could make it home on time.
“It was not an evacuation as some have been saying, we released staff members out of good will because they are concerned about safety as a result of what has been happening in Tshwane. There is nothing out of the ordinary in our office building,” said Medupi.
There were reports of other government departments closing shop and releasing staffers early. Retail stores in the Pretoria CBD also closed as a precaution at around lunchtime.
Violence continued on Tuesday with roads blocked, buses burnt out and shops looted in Tshwane townships such as Attridgeville, Mamelodi, GaRankuwa and Hammanskraal.
A community meeting held by outgoing mayor Kgosientsho Ramokgopa with Attridgeville residents was underway on Tuesday. Gauteng ANC chairman Paul Mashatile and Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi accompanied Ramokgopa.
African News Agency