31/01/2014. Angry community members of Zithobeni township in Bronkhospruit during a service delivery protest. Picture: Oupa Mokoena

Pretoria - Tshwane executive mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa visited residents of Bronkhorstspruit to address service delivery concerns on Wednesday, the City of Tshwane said.

Ramokgopa visited the area to receive a memorandum of demands from members representing the Bronkhorstspruit Group of Concerned Residents, spokesman Blessing Manale said.

Protests erupted earlier this month in the townships of Zithobeni, Rethabiseng, and Ekangala near Bronkhorstspruit over the high price of electricity earlier this month.

Police said several buildings had been set alight including a clinic, a library and a hall.

A total of seven buildings were set alight during protests in the area. Two people were arrested in Rethabiseng for public violence and illegal public gathering.

“I call upon all our residents to understand that the integration of a bigger and better Tshwane will come with some inconveniences and challenges, but importantly the redevelopment of Bronkhorstspruit as the greater eastern capital is a dream,” Ramokgopa said.

He said he would continue to engage leaders including chiefs and traditional houses to ensure development in the area.

“The protracted stand-off, protests and closed-door negotiations between various stakeholders and interests groups in the Bronkhorstspruit and former Kungwini Municipality has yielded an agreement of co-operation and long term dialogue on the socio-economic challenges and intervention measures in the areas,” Manale said.

He said the city would roll out indigent and voter registration roadshows.

“Communities are urged to avail themselves and register on the indigent programme to qualify for services such as free 100 kWh electricity and 10 kl water.

The city would also have an outreach programme to assist residents with queries relating to incorrect billings, he said.