GAUTENG PROTEST UPDATE: The Vaal Mall, Makro, Cash Build, the Vanderbijlpark CBD, Riversquare Shopping Centre and the SPCA in the Vaal Triangle are some of the public areas that have been confirmed completely or partially closed as precautionary measure due to pro-Zuma protests in Gauteng. Vaal Mall said in a statement that they have decided to close Vaal Mall from 1 pm, today, 12 July. Vaal Mall Portfolio Manager, Shana Maree-Paraskevopoulos, said in a statement this is a mere precaution and they confirm there is no need to panic. Trading will resume as normal tomorrow. Makro and Cash Build in Vanderbijlpark have confirmed to 90.6 FM Stereo that they are closed as a precautionary measure, while President Hyper was conducting a meeting to decide on the way forward for its centre. Riversquare Shopping Centre has also confirmed to 90.6 FM that it closed its doors just for today. So far they will be open during trading hours tomorrow.
The local SPCA said in a statement that they have been forced to close both their Vanderbijlpark and Vereeniging branches due to the riots in the area, which means their landlines will not be active. According to the SPCA, they cannot risk the lives of staff and animals in their care. The organisation asked that only emergency cases and animal cruelty cases are reported through their emergency line - 083 292 5862.
AfriForum Vanderbijlpark earlier warned that residents need to be careful of voice notes that only contain partial information. The group said shop owners in Vanderbijlpark and the Vereeniging CBD areas have closed shops for fear of possible unrest. It also recommended that people avoid the CBD’s of both Vanderbijlpark and Vereeniging as well as any other malls or shopping centres. The 90.6 FM News Team understands this is the same case in Meyerton.
This comes amid breaking news that the Defence Force has confirmed it is busy with pre-deployment processes. The police and other law-enforcement agencies asked for assistance to quell the violent protests that broke out in KwaZulu-Natal on Friday and spread to Gauteng and the Eastern Cape. Protesters demand the release of former president Jacob Zuma. PHOTOS: (SANDF, Vaal Mall, SPCA)