Municipal building torched in Grabouw

The blaze has since been extinguished but violent protests in continue in the area.

Protesters in Grabouw in the Western Cape demonstrate over the lack of housing, poor and expensive electricity supply and bad road conditions on Tuesday, 16 September 2014. Picture: Sapa.

CAPE TOWN - A municipal building has been set alight in Grabouw.

While this morning's blaze caused extensive damage to the building, the area remains volatile following days of protests over a lack of housing and poor service delivery.

The N2 Highway had to be closed again this morning due to the ongoing demonstrations.

The Overberg district municipality's Reinard Geldenhuys says, "It took a while for the fire department to get to the scene, due to the fact that there's still protest action in the area. At the moment, the fire has been extinguished and the people are calm."

Over 1,000 Grabouw residents marched to the Theewaterskloof Municipal offices on Monday where they handed over a list of grievances to Mayor Chris Punt.

It is the second memorandum that has been handed over to the municipality in two months.

The community has highlighted a lack of housing as the biggest issue facing residents.

Meanwhile, many Grabouw residents appear to be divided on who exactly is driving the violent protests in the area.

A meeting between community leaders, residents, police and Theewaterskloof municipal officials was short-lived this morning.

A member of the Grabouw Civic Association, who was part of the meeting, claims her children were being threatened by Democratic Alliance supporters and officials.

The woman then rushed to her home, where a crowd had gathered.

Police were forced to intervene when men, who were believed to be armed, were among the crowd.

The association says the protests are politically motivated.

Many locals says they just want normality to return to their community.