Political parties have criticised the absence of President Cyril Ramaphosa as the West Rand burns in anger following the horrific gang rape of eight women at an abandoned mine last week.
Community members took matters into their own hands yesterday torching homes that allegedly belonged to illegal miners. The situation around Kagiso was so tense that police had confirmed that one person had died due to the community uprising.
The Star understands that angry community members sought out the illegal miners chasing them through the deserted mine lands.
Police had to rescue 19 illegal foreigners who were likely to face mob justice.
The ANC’s leadership had also been questioned with the party’s spokesperson Pule Mabe telling reporters that the ANC was no longer able to control the anger of South Africans.
Mabe appealed to illegal foreign nationals and miners to surrender themselves to police. Africa People’s Convention (APC) leader. Themba Godi described Ramaphosa as the president of absenteeism.
He said Ramaphosa was disconnected to the country allowing the nation to destroy itself.
“It’s as clear as daylight that the current (administration) under President Cyril Ramaphosa has lost grip of the country. This is a case of things fall apart because the centre is no longer holding,” Godi said.
Godi said South Africans were sick and tired of an administration that only cared about lining the pockets of white capitalists. He said the ANC was too focused on factional battles, including the step-aside rule that the party had lost focus on the country.
“Ramaphosa is nowhere to be found and there is an absence of leadership; this is what has characterised his term absence of leadership. He seems to be embroiled with the elites talking in big English and selling public entities,” Godi said.
UDM leader, Bantu Holomisa said he was disappointed in the manner of the government and the police. He criticised the ANC for marching with the community during times of upheaval. At the same time, Holomisa said the police were part of a cover-up involving the “Phala Phalagate” controversy.
“We are not surprised; they are just deceiving the public. They march against their own government and that government is doing nothing,” Holomisa said.
Ramaphosa also faces a diplomatic crisis with the Nigerian embassy stepping in to protect its citizens involved in the attack by zama zamas.
The Star understands that the Nigerians who were part of the crew who were shooting a film at the mine dump had received threats from some South Africans following suggestions that they could have been part of a plot to rape the eight women.
Meanwhile, Minerals and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe called for the establishment of a unit in the police that would focus on illegal mining.
He said illegal mining was a criminal activity which required the intervention of law enforcement.
“When there was a crisis in KZN with the floods, some of us couldn’t attend that crisis because we had a crisis in Klerksdorp…,” Mantashe said.
Meanwhile, the Presidency couldn’t confirm when Ramaphosa would visit the areas affected by unrest on the West Rand, nor could it be confirmed that the president would reach out to the victims of the gang rape.