The South African Police Service (SAPS) revealed 10 people have been arrested after a video was posted to social media showing a stolen construction vehicle digging up the N12 as part of a housing protest in the North West province.
The Ikageng community began protesting after large sections of the community were reportedly upset about how property stands and houses were being allocated in the area.
They barricaded the N12 between Potch and Klerksdorp, causing major traffic delays and damage to vehicles by throwing stones.
Things took a turn towards the unexpected when a video popped up on Twitter showing protesters using a stolen digger to destroy the road.
VIDEO: Protestors destroy road at Sarafina entrance next to N12 yesterday afternoon. They hijacked an excavator and started to break up the road between Klerksdorp and Potchefstroom. pic.twitter.com/37iWlHUEN4
— Yusuf Abramjee (@Abramjee) June 26, 2019
One person was arrested early on in the protest in relation to the apparent looting of a goods truck.
The SAPS have revealed that an additional six men and three women have been arrested for public violence in relation to the protest action on the N12.
“The police are maintaining a presence in the area and the N12 has been opened for traffic since yesterday [Wednesday] evening,” the SAPS said in a statement.
Concerned business owner
The owner of the construction company that the digger belonged to has also come forward, stating that this is not the first time his business has been targeted by protestors.
“Two weeks ago, I got a call that protesters had taken my two trucks to the N12 and held my driver hostage. I lost about R36000 that day and police had to rescue my driver,” he told The tar.
“They have informed us that they are not fighting us but they need our machines. They also said if we are not willing to assist, they will hurt us.”