CAPE TOWN – There’s a heavy police presence in Port Elizabeth where community members are meeting with officials in the wake of a violent demonstration apparently over teacher vacancies.
Police officers used rubber bullets earlier to disperse demonstrators who appear to be demanding that a number of schools be shut down.
It’s understood the Northern Areas Education Forum is unsatisfied with the way the provincial education department has been dealing with teacher vacancies.
Speaking to Algoa FM, ANC MP Cedric Frolick says talks are underway.
“We had a meeting with some of the community leaders involved and some members of the task team and they had to go and report back to their people. However, when I got onto the scene just after 7 o clock the situation had worsened and the police were struggling to control the situation,”said Frolick.
The demonstration started off peacefully this morning, but turned ugly when protesters allegedly began throwing stones at police vehicles and other road users.
— Lenyaro Sello (@lenyarosello) July 27, 2015
— Glenda Perumal (@pumpkinangel09) July 27, 2015
PE police say the situation in the city’s northern areas remains tense.
The police’s Marinda Mills says they’ve urged residents to avoid affected areas.
“We haven’t asked anyone to stay indoors but we are asking them to avoid those areas and to try avoiding mixing with these crowds because things can go wrong and people can get injured. We’ve had innocent bystanders in the past getting involved in these protest actions and so it’s best to avoid the area.”