ANC condemns Mothutlung protests

The party’s leaders have finally broken their silence on the unrest in which four people died.

FILE: Protesters gather for a community meeting in Mothutlung after the first two deaths in the community. Picture: Sebabatso Mosamo/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The ANC's National Working Committee (NWC) has condemned last week's deadly protest action in the Madibeng municipality in the North West.

Four people have died since violence erupted on Monday.

Hundreds of residents took to the streets of Mothutlung over water shortages, leading to an alleged shooting by the police which resulted in three of the deaths - two at the scene and one in hospital on Monday.

Another man died after he succumbed to injuries sustained after falling from a moving police Nyala, with some blaming authorities for his fall.

The deaths and accusations of police brutality sparked an outcry in the community and throughout the country.

The area has also become a political focus, with the Economic Freedom Fighters and Democratic Alliance sending leaders to address locals about service delivery and police brutality.

The ANC NWC, which includes party President Jacob Zuma, says the protestors should have refrained from violence.

They said the destruction of public and private property during protests merely served as a distraction from the public's grievances.

"We really decry the violent nature of the protest action. We know that their right to protest is guaranteed in the Constitution," explains the party's Jackson Mthembu.

"[But] where we get a little bit concerned is when those protests become violent and people's properties are burnt."