Calm restored to Boitumelong

Residents went on the rampage, destroying public property and looting foreign-owned shops.

FILE: Calm has been restored to the volatile Boitumelong township near Bloemhof in the North West. Picture: Sapa.

JOHANNESBURG - Calm has been restored to the volatile Boitumelong township near Bloemhof, North West police said on Wednesday.

Residents went on the rampage on Wednesday, destroying public property, looting foreign-owned shops and stoning passing vehicles.

They've accused the Lekwa-Teemane Local Municipality of corruption and maladministration.

Locals are demanding the mayor and some councillors step down.

Several homes and vehicles belonging to council officials and police officers have been torched over the last three days.

Violent scenes erupted overnight, including the torching of seven homes belonging to police officers.

Seven trucks have also been torched over the past three days.

Dozens of police officers have been deployed to the area to maintain calm.

Police blocked off a section of the N12 leading to Boitumelong, following violent protests in the area today.

Rocks and rubble are strewn across the highway, which passes through the well-developed area.

On Monday night, six houses and a community centre were set alight by angry demonstrators.

Schooling has also been disrupted in the township as a result of the violent protests.

Almost 140 people have been arrested since the start of the protest last week.