More violence hits Khutsong

Violence broke out again in Khutsong yesterday when police used rubber bullets to disperse protesting crowds throwing stones at them.

Violence broke out again in Khutsong yesterday when police used rubber bullets to disperse protesting crowds throwing stones at them.

This followed a tense meeting between an ANC delegation led by general secretary Gwede Mantashe and leaders of the Merafong Demarcation Forum (MDF). The meeting adjourned for some time for them to caucus.

MDF spokesman Jomo Mogale said residents wanted nothing but to be reincorporated into Gauteng.

Merafong was incorporated into North West from Gauteng after cross-border municipalities were abolished in 2006. Residents objected to their transfer from "wealthy Gauteng to poorer North West".

They embarked on a number of protests, including the disruption of schools, petrol bombing the homes of ANC candidates, blocking roads and destruction of municipal property. They also boycotted the 2006 municipal elections, which saw only 130 people casting their votes.

Residents applied to the constitutional court, asking the court to declare that the Gauteng provincial legislature failed to comply with its constitutional obligation to facilitate public involvement during the process of changing provincial borders that led to Merafong being made part of North West.

The court dismissed the application, saying it was a political matter that needed to be addressed by politicians.

While the two groups were meeting, hundreds of residents, mainly youths, sung liberation songs while waiting to be addressed by their leaders. - Sapa

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