After some initial calm on the streets of Korsten on Thursday, there was another flashpoint in this part of Gqeberha later in the day. Crowds of shopkeepers, business owners, and foreign nationals (many believed to be Somalian) all ended up scuffling with police during a tense stand-off – which was alleviated by the use of stun grenades.
Gqeberha latest updates: Stun grenades used on crowds
The atmosphere has been extremely unsettled in Korsten since Wednesday, when a heated argument over a crashed car resulted in the firebombing of a local taxi fleet. There were running battles and fighting which spilled onto main roads, and some foreign nationals were seen carrying a few seriously dangerous weapons.
Police Minister Bheki Cele visited the Gqeberha suburb earlier in the day, warning locals that further violence would not be tolerated. But the hatted politician wasn’t around for the chaotic scenes that unfolded soon afterwards, as members of the local community had to be restrained and dispersed by SAPS officers.
Somalians amongst foreigners drawing SAPS’ attention
Stun grenades were used to break up large crowds of gatvol residents, with the situation still remaining volatile as we head into the evening. But it seems some progress has been made.
For now, the streets have been cleared and police have regained some semblance of law and order. But the location still remains a tinderbox of tension, and SAPS are on high alert for any further clashes.
Watch Korsten residents battle with police on Thursday
Earlier | Tensions between taxi drivers and Somalian shop owners remained extremely high following Cele’s visit to the Korsten taxi rank. #AlgoaFMNews #Gqeberha #Somalian #Somalia pic.twitter.com/o6r2SpBYlI
— Kirstie Kiki Paulse (@Kiki_Paulse) October 14, 2021
#Unrest Situation a short while ago in Korsten, Gqeberha/Port Elizabeth. Strong @SAPoliceService presence. Stay clear from area.. @BOSBEER2006 @WCLiveTraffic @MARIUSBROODRYK @News24 @eNCA pic.twitter.com/Ybh7A5ywAo
— BOSBEER.COM (@BOSBEER2006) October 14, 2021
Business owners in Korsten are unhappy with what they call “illegal raids” made by police. This, following minister of police Bheki Cele’s visit to Korsten where the violence between taxi drivers and foreign nationals ensued late yesterday #sabcnews pic.twitter.com/la9jP4ZZeA
— KimmyKool (@KimDanieLs09) October 14, 2021