The ongoing protests on the R66 between Eshowe and Gingindlovu in the King Cetshwayo District have given rise to criminal elements which pose a risk to the economic well-being of the area which connects important cities and towns like Durban with Ulundi.
Whilst the DA understands that people have the right to peaceful protest under our constitution, these protests are getting out of hand, with a serious economic impact on the region. It has further come to the DA’s attention that criminal elements might now have hi-jacked these protests and are charging people R40 to get through the protests and use the road.
Crime remains one of the most persisting issues, and one of the most concerning for the DA in KZN, as it threatens safety, lives, property and, in this situation the very prospects of the local economy. A stern stance has become non-negotiable and must be immediately employed in order to quell these negative developments.
The Democratic Alliance therefore calls on the MEC for Transport, and Community Safety, Sipho Hlomuka, to take the necessary steps to remedy the situation, and restore law and order to the area. In this strained economy which the province finds itself, this destructive behaviour cannot be allowed to continue. With each passing day it becomes more critical for the department to act decisively to ensure that this vital artery is free of hindrance and people are allowed free movement as guaranteed in the constitution.
This is part of the continued slide into chaos we are seeing in the ANC-run province, and the inability of the provincial government to bring stability to our province. The recent Human Rights Commission report into the July Violence in KZN has shown the shortcomings of policing in this province, and it is important that more is done to ensure that KZN becomes a province where the rule of law applies.
The safety of communities and infrastructure is one of the pillars to achieving a functioning society and province. This is why we wait eagerly on the president to announce an election date as this will mark the beginning of ushering of a new DA government that will prioritize and deliver a safer KZN.