N2 freeway protests: KZN government urges calm after meeting protesters

KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) Sipho Hlomuka, together with KZN MEC for Social Development Nonhlanhla Khoza, have called for calm in the Ugu district where protesters barricaded roads, including the N2 freeway during a violent public protest.

Protests in the Ugu district started on Tuesday morning. The angry protesters blocked the N2 at Izingolweni between Hibberdene and Port Shepstone with burning tyres and rubble from around 4.30am. They also allegedly set several trucks alight on the N2 freeway on Tuesday afternoon.

KZN MECs MEET UP WITH N2 FREEWAY PROTESTORS

From Wednesday morning, the two MECs met with protesters from uMzumbe, Ray Nkonyeni and Ezinqolweni residents, to engage and find peaceful ways to address public concerns over access to basic services. Since Tuesday, the district has seen violent protests, with residents barricading major routes, such as the N2 freeway between Port Shepstone and Durban, the N2 between Port Shepstone and the Eastern Cape and the R102 in Hibberdene.

MECs CONDEMN VIOLENCE IN SERVICE DELIVERY PROTESTS

READ: Watch: N2 freeway protests latest, residents demand water, jobs         

The MECs have condemned the violence which saw trucks being burned, public infrastructure damaged and shops looted.

KZN MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison, Peggy Nkonyeni on Tuesday called on police to act swiftly and arrest the suspects who burnt trucks on the N2 freeway for arson and public violence.

According to KZN CoGTA spokesperson, Senzelwe Mzila, in the engagement with the protesters, the MECs called upon communities to desist from damaging public infrastructure and infringing on the rights of other residents who did not wish to protest.

Photo: KZN COGTA

“Emanating from the engagements with residents, a special team consisting of the aggrieved community members will now engage directly with the Provincial Government and the Ugu district family of municipalities regarding their needs. A second meeting will be convened on Tuesday 30 March 2021, where a way forward will be provided. In the meantime, the MECs will galvanise additional resources to address the challenges faced by these communities,” Mzila said

KZN CoGTA spokesperson, Senzelwe Mzila

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Presh JM Reporter

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