No violence on election day: minister

By SAPA Time of article published May 6, 2014

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Johannesburg - Co-operative Governance Minister Lechesa Tsenoli urged people to refrain from violence during Wednesday's elections.

“We call on communities to do everything in their power to avoid any violence in pursuing their civic concerns. It is grossly inappropriate to disrupt services that do exist, and elections, for any reason,” he said on Tuesday.

Everybody had a responsibility to help the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) conduct a free and fair election.

“We call on all voters to go out in our numbers to vote.”

Tsenoli condemned violence that had preceded the election.

On Monday, residents of the Gugulethu informal settlement on the East Rand used burning tyres and rocks to block streets.

“Several vehicles were reported to have been stoned, but there were no injuries reported,” Lt-Col Lungelo Dlamini said at the time.

Forty-six people were arrested for public violence.

In Sterkspruit, in the Eastern Cape, an attempt was made on Monday morning to burn down a school said to be used as a voting station. A guard at the Ekuzoleni Junior Secondary School noticed smoke coming from the school hall in the early hours of the morning. He found burning tyres inside the hall and a broken window.

“School materials, including books, chairs and cabinets, were destroyed,” said Colonel Sibongile Soci.

Investigations revealed the school hall was not a polling centre, even for special votes, IEC commissioner Bongani Finca told reporters at the national results operations centre in Pretoria on Monday.


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