The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has commended North West residents for choosing non-violence during the civil unrest which has ravaged the country over the past five days.
Cosatu says their action is encouraging and shows high levels of patriotism and civil obedience.
It believes this is in defence of the economy, livelihoods and jobs. It says it also shows that the people of the North West understand that they have bigger challenges facing them, which include poverty, unemployment, and inequality.
Cosatu Provincial Secretary, Kopano Konopi says, “They are facing deeper challenges amongst others inequality, poverty and unemployment and their action for not engaging in violent action, it was a protection to the economy, protection to the livelihood and the protection to the jobs as this shows that the people of the North West are patriotic for their province and their country.”
North West Police Spokesperson, Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone, also shared the union’s sentiments. He commended community members for having cooperated with the South African Police Service (SAPS) in ensuring that no property was destroyed or looted.
“All these unlawful acts would not have won especially under this difficult time of the ever-increasing or rising COVID-19 cases, contrary to these actions. These unlawful acts are actually meant to show disunity, aim at criminality which will result in the loss of lives, livelihoods, and damage to property and essential infrastructure.”
The Executive Council and Office of the Premier have also extended their gratitude to North West residents for their conduct. Spokesperson for the North West Premier, Vuyisile Ngezi says, “The Premier also takes this opportunity to thank the people of North West for having taken a stand to protect buildings, shopping malls, public and private property against any incidents of looting.”
While looting never took place in the province, attempts were made to destabilise the Mahikeng CBD, forcing a number of businesses to close early on Tuesday afternoon.
SABC News reporter Tebogo Phakedi earlier spoke to the district mayor of the Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality, Justice Makolomakwa, about allegations that he was involved in organising protests. He denied any involvement. She also caught up with the community members who stayed up at night patrolling to prevent looting and destruction.
District mayor denies allegations of mobilising in Mahikeng: