Manganese ore truck torched in Gqeberha

Manganese ore truck torched in Gqeberha
Mining News Pro - Atruck was set alight in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape in apparent ongoing attacks on foreign nationals driving manganese ore trucks.

Eastern Cape police said six people stopped and petrol-bombed the truck at 05.40 on Monday on the N2 between Bluewater Bay and the Markman off ramp on the N2 freeway's outbound lane.

The truck was empty and was travelling towards Markman, said police spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu.

She said the driver escaped unscathed while the road was temporarily closed to remove the truck.

Naidu said: "No protestors were on the scene when police arrived. The incident is an isolated one and is not related to the nationwide protest. It is alleged that this stems from an internal issue with the company. Police are monitoring all hotspots including the N2 freeway."

Insiders told News24 that the attack of the truck forms part of an organised group of local truck drivers targeting foreign national truck drivers in the manganese ore industry.

The Nelson Mandela Business Chamber (NMBC) and the Democratic Alliance have condemned the incidents.

DA Eastern Cape MPL Bobby Stevenson said: "The DA condemns this ongoing pattern of violence directed against trucks. It is destroying our economy when goods and services cannot move freely on our roads. We need the rule of law to prevail in South Africa not the rule of war."

"I call on SAPS to pull out all stops to halt this anarchy before it spreads further and the [sic] widespread looting occurs. These kind of disputes need to be resolved through peaceful negotiation. It cannot be my way or else I will burn the highway [sic]," added Stevenson.

NMBC CEO Denise van Huyssteen said: "We are aware that attacks of this nature on truck drivers have been an ongoing problem for more than a year. This is a completely unacceptable situation and as such we condemn violence, the destruction of property and the threat that these actions pose to lives."

She added: "We are deeply concerned about the lawlessness associated with incidents such as these and as such appeal to the South African Police and the relevant authorities to ensure that they are deploying sufficient focus and resources towards ensuring that issues relating to law and order are prioritised in Nelson Mandela Bay."

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