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Situation remains tense in Jeppestown

After a day of rubber bullets and looting, calm has been restored to Jeppestown in the Johannesburg CBD.

The building where SAPS and JMPD officers are firing rubber bullets at evictees on the top floor in Jeppestown. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Running battles continued between police and residents of Jeppestown, who started protesting on Wednesday over evictions.

Residents were being evicted from old buildings.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) and Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) officers fired rubber bullets towards the top of the buildings earlier, where protesters threw rocks from the top floor.

Groups of people gathered on different corners of the industrial area and several shops have been targeted.

Earlier, a used car dealership was broken into and at least six vehicles were damaged.

An official from the City of Johannesburg arrived in Jeppestown on Wednesday afternoon to address a crowd of hundreds of people.

Edward Mohale told community that the buildings didn't belong to the municipality and said they were privately owned.

They, however, continued to sing and chant, forcing police to arrest eight people for public violence.

The police's Kay Makhubela said the eight protesters arrested refused to back down.

"They blocked the roads and we dispersed them but they keep on coming back."

Calm has been restored in Jeppestown, but police are maintaining a high visibility in the area.

Meanwhile, residents of Lenasia have called for a clean-up of the Thembelihle informal settlement and surrounding areas.

Weeks of protests prevented the municipalities from collecting refuse, which has piled up, posing a health hazard.

A resident from the informal settlement told Eyewitness News they were pleading for help in resolving the situation.

"I don't know how I can relate this to anyone who's in government just to help us for the community not to go on in this protest. Please, let [Human Settlements MEC Jacob] Mamabolo come and address the people."

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