Protesting Orange Farm residents in the Vaal yesterday barricaded the busy Golden Highway from as early as 3am to back demands for better service delivery.
The Extension 9 residents burnt tyres and electricity pylons and used rocks and tree branches as barricades. As the demonstration progressed into the morning, peak hour traffic was brought to a standstill with motorists being forced to use alternative routes.
The SAPS and Johannesburg Metro police opened fire on the protesters with rubber bullets. The demonstrators retaliated by throwing stones and hurling insults at the police.
Community leader Hamilton Maluleke said: "We have been here for more than 16 years and there is no sign of development. We are still using pit toilets."
Some residents complained that criminals from other extensions in Orange Farm had taken over their area. Siphiwe Nkosi, 41, said: "Robbery is rife here and now the situation is worse. If you do not have R400 or at least the latest cellphone you can get killed by the criminals."
Police spokesman Superintendent Nthabiseng Mazibuko said three women were arrested and that police would continue to patrol the area.