14 August 2015
The upmarket suburb of Walmer in Port Elizabeth was brought to a standstill yesterday as large groups of residents from the nearby township blocked roads and demonstrated outside the Walmer Police Station.
In scenes that looked similar to the protests of the 1980’s, the Police eventually had to use force to disperse the crowd of about 500 people who had gathered in Main Road Walmer, demanding the release of a man who had been arrested the day before, when the protest began.
Township residents gathered at different intersections around Walmer, and disrupted the flow of traffic by burning tyres, said the South African Police in a statement.
Victoria Road, 8th to 11th Avenue, 6th and 5th Avenue were closed; and two private vehicles were damaged by the protestors throwing stones at passing vehicles.
It is also reported that an elderly man was assaulted in the 6th avenue car park by protesters.
Police arrested five people following the protests, with two facing charges of public violence while three others were arrested for looting and malicious damage to property.
A lack of housing and basic service delivery were a direct cause of the community’s frustrations which have boiled over into violent protest according to Bobby Stevenson of the Democratic Alliance.
The situation is under control but remains tense.