Razor wire to keep Cape Town rival marchers apart
Cape Town is bracing itself for mass action from 6am on Tuesday in the city centre, with the ANC and the opposition planning marches to parliament.
To keep the marchers apart, razor wire will be strung along Roeland Street, one of the main roads into the city, to the Louis Botha statue at parliament's gates.
ANC supporters are to be confined to the city side and the opposition to the Table Mountain side.
Sources in parliament said the legislature was also tightening security ahead of Tuesday.Insiders said secret planning meetings had been taking place for the past two weeks to prepare for Tuesday.
Some meetings had been held at the police academy in Bishop Lavis on the Cape Flats.
Riot police, the presidential protection unit and the State Security Agency have been roped in to beef up security in and outside parliament.
Public access to the institution will be strictly controlled and parliament has asked political parties to share the National Assembly public gallery on a proportional representation basis.
Nevertheless, parliament's spokesman, Moloto Mothapo, insisted that no extraordinary security measures were being taken, saying the sitting on Tuesday was ordinary.
He said security outside parliament was the responsibility of the City of Cape Town.
DA chief whip John Steenhuisen criticised parliament for not sharing its security plans with political parties so that they could advise MPs and staff how to avoid potential danger.
He said it was expected that security would be heavy-handed.
"We expect the full might of the state jackboot," he said.
He criticised National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete for not telling opposition parties what to expect.