Protest flare ups in Siqalo informal settlement has prompted angry residents to continue to shut down a major road through Mitchells Plain if their service delivery concerns are not addressed. Protest action spilled in the streets this week bringing traffic to a standstill. Residents blocked a section of Jakes Gerwel Drive with torched tyres and canisters from portable toilets serviced by protesting workers.
Mitchell’s Plain residents have complained that their lives are being disrupted on a weekly basis as roads are blocked off by outraged informal residents. Mitchell’s Plain ward councillor Natalie Bent met with irate Mitchells plain commuters this week. She said it’s upsetting that a minority group can cause destruction in the precinct.
“A small group can just put everyone in danger. Protests refused to be moved. The roads from Mitchells Plain to Cape Town are constantly blocked off. Our residents are very unhappy because of the service delivery they are receiving,” says Bent.
Workers responsible say their employers have violated a number of labour laws and are being unfairly compensated.
Bent also met with Siqalo residents to hear their grievances, who said they don’t want the portable toilets because they smell and leak inside their homes.
Bent says that Mitchell’s Plain residents have been kept at ransom by the people of this informal settlement. She says coercion and violence is never the answer.
“Holding the people of Mitchell’s Plain ransom is not the way to get what you want,” says Bent.
A number of Metro Police and South African Police Service officials were on scene.
Bent will meet with the city council’s service providers on complaints from Siqalo residents.