One of the burnt out vehicles on the R55 route in Olievenhoutbosch. Picture: Rapula Moatshe

Olivenhoutbosch - Two vehicles were set alight on Friday on the R55 route, where people from Olivenhoutbosch embarked on a violent protest over housing issues.

Protesters said they wanted to express their dissatisfaction with looming action to evict them from the RDP houses houses they illegally occupied last year.

They claimed that the Department of Human Settlements, which obtained an eviction order against them, had threatened to evict them from their houses on Monday.

Protesters barricaded the R55 route near a shopping complex with burning tyres and rocks, preventing motorists from using the road.

The protest was apparently started in the small hours of the morning with residents taking to the streets.

Police closed off the R55 route to traffic and have advised motorists to avoid using it after two vehicles were burnt to ashes.

According to eyewitnesses, the two vehicles were burnt by protesters after their drivers tried to force their way through the barricaded roads.

Taxis and other modes of public transport halted their operations due to the tension, which saw the police using rubber bullets to disperse protesters.

Protesters, however, refused to back down and disperse despite the police firing at them.

They instead retaliated by hurling stones at the police. 

Meanwhile, the EFF in Gauteng has called for both Tshwane mayor and Human Settlements MEC Uhuru Moila to deliver services to people occupying the RDP houses.

In a media statement the party said Moila must desist from wasting taxpayers’ money on court processes to get an eviction order to put them out in the cold. 

The party further said: "The Executive Mayor of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga, is also warned that if he does not commence the electrification, water and sanitation infrastructure installation process, the community of Olievenhoutbosch will lose its patience with his laziness, arrogance and incompetence."

Pretoria News