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Rubber bullets fired in Bekkersdal

A second person was injured after violent protests erupted at the West Rand township.

Angry residents in Bekkersdal have threatened to burn down a house of a community leader on 23 October 2013. Picture: Sebabatso Mosamo/EWN.

BEKKERSDAL - Rubber bullets have been fired in Bekkersdal on Gauteng's West Rand where protesting residents torched an information centre on Wednesday.

Clashes broke out between police and residents who are calling for the municipality to be dissolved.

A person was also injured in the violence, allegedly after he was attacked with a panga.

Fezile Momozo says the attack was carried out by ward councillors.

Demonstrators are now moving towards the local police station to lay charges.

Violence first erupted on Wednesday morning, with residents blocking roads and vandalising municipal buildings.

A 14-year-old boy was shot and wounded, allegedly by a Somali shopkeeper, after residents apparently tried to loot his business.

Bekkersdal Residents' Association Secretary Father Resteou says a councillor instructed a vigilante group to attack members of the community.

"He went down to the informal settlement and said they must come and attack us."

He says the councillor told the group, "They are not with us in the struggle."

A community meeting has been held where residents met with protest leaders.

The meeting started with residents singing struggle songs and chanting slogans, calling for the municipal leaders to be fired.

Residents want the municipality to be dissolved and say they're outraged that Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane is refusing to do so.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leaders have arrived in the area to meet with the residents.

Party head Julius Malema is expected to address the community.

Resteou says the association will not allow Malema to use the protest to score political points.

"They should not use our struggle for canvassing for support and preparing for elections."