As South Africans express their democratic right to vote in the elections on Wednesday, other angered citizens are exercising their rights to protest. In at least three major settlements, demonstrations have kicked off on Election Day.
Protests and traffic updates on Election Day
The first reported incidents came from Khayelitsha in Cape Town. Residents had blockaded the road before dawn on Wednesday, with Swartklip Road – between Baden Powell Drive and Spine Road – being closed off to the public. Steve Biko Road has also been closed as the discontent intensifies over poor service delivery in the region.
— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) May 8, 2019
Latest traffic news for Wednesday 8 May
Meanwhile, at the opposite end of the Western Cape, residents of Plettenberg Bay have also taken to the streets to vent their frustrations. This is affecting the N2 road and traffic is already being forced to take an alternative route:
Western Cape – N2 Route: #ProtestAction at Plettenberg Bay – traffic diverted via the Airport road
— Rob Beezy (@TrafficSA) May 8, 2019
Protests target N2 routes
Although there are no disruptions to report on the N1 or N3, communities serviced by the N2 seem to be the ones vocalising their concerns on Election Day. Protests in Umlazi, Durban flared-up on Tuesday night and continued in Wednesday morning.
From around 5:00, sections of the N2 near Umgababa, Lamontville, Higginson Highway in Chatsworth, Ntuzuma and Mary Thipe Road in Cato Manor have been blighted by burning tyres and debris.
— CEO/Founder of BestServicedRankAwards (@ayandamsweli46) May 8, 2019
The southbound carriageway is experiencing the heavier disruptions, and commuters using this stretch of the highway are advised to exercise caution and expect significant delays.
KZN/ N2 Route: #ProtestAction at Umgababa South – EXPECT DELAYS © 08•05•2019
— SA emergency reports (@MARIUSBROODRYK) May 8, 2019
Durban unrest continues ahead of elections
The situation in the townships outside of Durban is arguably the most fraught of the lot – and their protests don’t just involve traffic disruption: SABC reported this morning that two community halls set-up as voting stations have been burned down as part of the demonstrations.
BREAKING NEWS: Two community halls meant to be used as voting stations, have been torched. Also, protest action on Higginson Highway -now cleared and roads blockaded at Umgababa. Stay tuned to @Newsbreak_Lotus @Lotusfm for updates #SAElections2019 #sabcnews
— Salma Patel (@salpatel786) May 8, 2019
- We’ll have more on these developments later in the day. For all the latest updates on what’s happening on Election Day, follow our live blog.