Limpopo protesters set up pay stations

limpopo2Protesters demanded entry fees to Relela and Kubjana villages in Limpopo on Friday morning. The “pay stations” set up at road blocks were operated by protesters in full view of the police.

Limpopo police spokesman Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi confirmed that roads were blocked in and around the villages, saying mainly police Nyalas were driving around.

Villages near Tzaneen were blocked with burning tyres and vandalised Stop signs.

The groups of four to ten protesters manning the road blocks wanted R5 entry fees from cars, and R10 from loaded bakkies,

People were only let through after they had paid the “entry fee”. Those who did not pay were forced to turn back.

On Friday morning, the police refrained from using rubber bullets when the protesters screamed at the officers to back off.

Taxi operators refused to drive through the area, forcing people to go on foot.

On Thursday, residents of Kubjana village near Relela torched the property of a local businessman after the body of a child and two other unharmed children were found in his car.

They had also clashed with police and stoned them.

The protests began after a schoolgirl from Relela, Khomotso Raolane, 15, was found murdered and mutilated, Sapa reported.

Her hands had been cut off and her cellphone and house keys placed inside her stomach, which had been sliced open. Her arms had been tied behind her back.

Two people were taken in for questioning but later released. Residents burnt their houses down on Saturday. During that protest a 15-year-old boy was shot dead, allegedly by police.

On Tuesday night, 15 police officers were injured and 19 police vehicles damaged when around 1500 people, armed with petrol bombs and stones, attacked the Relela satellite police station.