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One person dies as 'guards shoot' at municipal workers

Talk of plans to suspend staff creates panic at Steve Tshwete

One person has died after security guards opened fire at municipal workers.
One person has died after security guards opened fire at municipal workers.
Image: 123RF/ prathaan

One worker has been killed and three others injured at the Steve Tshwete local municipality's head office in Middelburg, Mpumalanga, after they were shot, allegedly by security guards employed by the council.

"Four people have been hospitalised after they were shot by security guards at the Steve Tshwete local municipality. The police are on the scene dealing with the situation. According to our information, employees were shot after forcing their way inside the municipal buildings," said Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brig Selvy Mohlala. 

This comes after the municipality was intending to suspend about 100 employees who have been on strike since Monday last week, demanding a salary increase. They demand their employment scale to be upgraded to level five so that their salaries and benefits can automatically improve. 

In April the municipality suspended 13 employees who were charged with participating in an unprotected  strike.

An employee who spoke to Sowetan on condition of anonymity at the scene said they were shocked to be shot at at their workplace. 

"We are employees here and we are allowed to enter the building but the security guards of the acting municipal manager decided to shoot at us. Employees heard that they were to be suspended and wanted to enter and get their letters of suspension but they shot at them," said the employee. 


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