An incident in which five suspects were arrested took place outside Pikitup’s offices amid protest action on Thursday, police confirmed to News24.
It is reported that the suspects attacked a Pikitup general manager, dousing him in petrol. The suspects are known to the GM, who managed to escape the attack.
The suspects were being detained at the Hillbrow police station on charges of attempted murder and malicious damage to property and were expected to appear in the Hillbrow Magistrate’s Court on Friday.
Pikitup warned residents in August that impending disagreements could lead to protests and refuse collection disruptions. Various Pikitup depots have been unable to operate due to the protests, with many Pikitup trucks being set alight.
Areas most affected by depots unable to operate are Soweto and Midrand.
The unrest comes after Jozi@Work employees lambasted the hiring of 2,800 workers from provinces outside of Gauteng towards the end of July in an email sent to the waste collection entity.
Most of the 2,800 employees come from the Eastern Cape.
Jozi@Work employees called for Joburg residents seeking employment to report to their nearest Pikitup depot on August 10 to demand jobs.
“All the metro police employed to abuse our brothers and sisters, be advised that we will not tolerate your corrupt behaviour,” the email warned, adding: “[It] is your right as a Joburg resident to demand that the jobs be given to you, not import labour from Mzimkhulu while you are unemployed. Also should they not employ us, all community leaders advise your people not to allow Pikitup to work in your area.”
The City of Joburg disbanded the programme and planned to absorb the former Jozi@Work employees into the metro municipality instead of them being temporary workers. The programme was said to be a “corrupt” attempt by then ANC administration to benefit some party members through a labour brokering system that mayor Herman Mashaba undertook to do away with in the city so that people were employed directly by the municipality.
Mashaba strongly condemned the attack.