Ricochet News

12 expected in court for violence in Motherwell protests - Addo Road and R334 remain closed

JUNE 21, 2017
12 expected in court for violence in Motherwell protests - Addo Road and R334 remain closed

Twelve people are expected in court on Thursday after they were arrested by Port Elizabeth police for public violence in the ongoing protests against evictions from municipal land in the Motherwell/Wells Estate area.

"The safety of our community is top priority for the South African Police Service. The on-going evictions being executed by the Sheriff of the Court in the Motherwell, Ikamvelihle and Wells Estate areas have sparked violence and damages towards innocent motorists and businesses traveling on the main roads surrounding these areas," described police spokesperson, Captain Andre Beetge. 

Captain Beetge said that on Tuesday night the Municipal Depot in Addo Road was targeted by "criminals by throwing stones and incendiary devices over the wall at the municipal and private vehicles parked inside".

He said that one Toyota Corolla was burnt out in the process.

"Another two privately owned cars and a municipal truck were damaged when stones knocked out their windows," he added.

"In the early hours of Wednesday morning, at 03:00, a special operation was launched in the Wells Estate area, where twelve persons were arrested for being in possession of incendiary devices (petrol bombs).

"Nine males, aged between 27 and 43 years, and three females, aged 20 to 31, were arrested."

Captain Beetge said that a further 30 tyres, 18 petrol bombs, and a five-litre can of petrol were confiscated.

The Motherwell Cluster Commander, Major General Dawie Rabie, repeated the warning that "protestors taking part in these activities will be arrested and held accountable."

The 12 suspects will face a charge of Public Violence at the Motherwell Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

"The Addo Road as well as the R334 will remain closed for the duration of this week till Friday when the evictions are expected to be completed," said Captain Beetge.

"SAPS urges motorists and businesses to avoid these routes as they will not be allowed to pass through these roads for their own safety."