Police fire stun grenades to disperse fuel price hike protesters
Police fired stun grenades in an attempt to disperse protesters who had gathered at the Marianhill toll plaza outside Durban on Friday morning.
The crowd had come to the toll plaza with picket boards‚ in protest of the recent fuel hikes and this year's Value Added Tax (VAT) increase.
A police source on the scene confirmed that police had fired stun grenades but that the protesters continued to stop traffic into and out of Durban. He said the protesters - a group of about 100 people - had caused a major traffic backlog.
In a statement released on Thursday‚ trade union Cosatu said: “Cosatu is strongly opposed to and vehemently condemns government’s VAT and fuel hikes. These above-inflation tax hikes are suffocating workers who are already battling to cope.”
This protest was one of three that took place on KwaZulu-Natal freeways on Friday.
On the N2 southbound‚ between Stanger and the Mvoti toll plaza‚ protest action is under way and traffic is backed up for about two kilometres.
Also on the N3 at Market road‚ heading to Durban‚ a group of vehicles has banded together on a go-slow causing traffic to come to a complete standstill.
EThekwini metro spokesperson senior superintendent Parboo Sewpersad said: “There are various go-slows taking place on the roads‚ the one at the Marianhill toll plaza is by Cosatu-affiliated people. The go-slows at the Mvoti toll plaza and on the N3 at market road are believed to be by private individuals.”