Steven Tau
1 minute read
6 May 2016
9:31 am

15 arrested for public violence in Vuwani

Steven Tau

23 schools were torched so far, with 18 of them partially damaged.

Vhudzani Secondary School in Vuwani. Picture: Steven Tau

The number of people arrested in the violence stricken area of Vuwani, just outside Thohoyandou, now stands at 15, Limpopo police confirmed on Friday morning.

Speaking to The Citizen, police spokesperson Colonel Malesela Ledwaba said the suspects are expected to appear in court on Monday.

On Thursday night, a house belonging to a local resident was reportedly set alight, but the police are yet to verify the reports. Addressing journalists following his visit to the nearby Mashau village, which saw many schools torched, State Security Minister David Mahlobo said law enforcers will leave no stone unturned until all suspects are arrested and brought to book.

“We can no longer allow these incidents of criminality and violence to continue, hence also urge residents to work closely with the police in ensuring that stability in the entire area of Vuwani is restored,” Mahlobo said.

So far since Monday, about 23 schools were torched by angry protesters who are demanding that the Municipal Demarcation Board(MDB) reverse its decision to merge Vuwani with Malamulele and other surrounding areas to form a new municipality.

Locals say they want to remain under the Makhado local municipality. However, Corporate Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des Van Rooyen said only the courts can reverse the demarcation decisions taken by the MDB.

“We are limited as government … in fact we don’t have the authority to reverse decisions taken by the MDB because that is an independent body,” Van Rooyen, who is among the cabinet ministers assigned to Vuwani by President Jacob Zuma said. Most of the violence has been happening during the night.