Port Elizabeth – Nine more people were arrested on Friday during a protests in Langa, Uitenhage, Eastern Cape police said.
“They were arrested for public violence and contempt of court,” said Warrant Officer Gerda Swart.
The area was quiet, but police were still keeping watch.
“The situation in the township remains tense but stable with police monitoring the situation very closely. Late yesterday (Thursday), isolated incidents of tyre burning in the streets were reported.”
She said four other people were arrested on Thursday.
The Nelson Mandela metro appealed for calm and stability in the area.
“We understand clearly the stressful situations that our people find themselves in due to lack of houses… We urge our people to be patient and avoid being misled and used as a tool for political point scoring,” deputy mayor Chippa Ngcolomba said.
He said the three-day violent protest in Kwalanga, Rosedale and surrounding areas was fuelled by criminality and opportunism.
“The high rate of service delivery in Uitenhage gives us comfort that these incidents have absolutely nothing to do with service delivery. They also have nothing to do with lack of information and consultation.”
A municipal health and wellness office, an African National Congress councillor’s house, and a Democratic Alliance office were set alight. Several shops were looted.
The protests erupted on Wednesday after the municipality demolished illegally built houses, Warrant Officer Basil Seekoei said on Thursday.
The DA said the slow pace of housing delivery, high levels of unemployment, and political infighting were the main causes of the violence.
“The painfully slow pace of service delivery from this ANC government has frustrated communities who continue to live in poverty while ANC cronies fight over positions and patronage rather than fighting for the people,” said Gustav Rautenbach, DA Chief Whip in the Nelson Mandela Bay metro.
“The mayor and deputy mayor must attend to this crisis and ensure that calm is restored to the Uitenhage community as a matter of urgency,” he said.