Angry residents attack man after hailstorm

Rudy Olivier, an employee of Dental Connection Laboratory in Krugersdorp inside the damaged car that were thrown with stones and bricks, and hit with sjamboks by angry Kagiso residents when he was on his way to Leratong Hospital to deliver dental parts.

All the windows, except for the back right and the windscreen of a white Toyota Tazz, were damaged when around 200 protestors descended upon a 49-year-old man driving towards Leratong Hospital.

“At that moment the only thing that went through my mind was that I need to get out of here – safely and quick!” – Rudy Olivier

With his lips still trembling, and dry blood on his left ear as a result of the broken glass, Rudy Olivier, an employee a dental laboratory, spoke to the NEWS about the ordeal that he had when he wanted to deliver dental parts this morning, 29 November, at about 9.20am.

Rudy Olivier's right ear have been cut after protestors broke the windows of his employers vehicle in Kagiso.

Rudy Olivier’s right ear have been cut after protestors broke the windows of his employers vehicle in Kagiso.

The parts, considering the circumstances, were not delivered.

“At that moment the only thing that went through my mind was that I need to get out of here – safely and quick!”

He says when he was passing through he did not see them, only when they were starting to shout and throw stones and bricks towards his car, hitting him with sjamboks, that he really became aware of their presence.

“They were standing in a field opposite the road and I think when they saw me they quickly ran to my car.”

According to Olivier they were very aggressive and violent and at one stage it looked as if they want to pull him out of his car.

“There were one ‘samaritan’ between them and he managed to calm them down and he told me to leave immediately.”

When he arrived at his employers more than ten serious dents could be counted as a result of the damage caused by the angry protestors.

De Waal Venter, Democratic Alliance Councillor for Ward 9 says as far as his understanding goes the residents are angry because Mogale City Local Municipality has not responded quickly enough to provide help after their homes were damaged and destroyed by the hailstorm that hit parts of the West Rand yesterday.

“While I was on my way to try and understand their grievances, I was stopped by other residents telling me that it would be unsafe.”

Willie Fourie, owner of Dental Connection Laboratory in Krugersdorp says he is upset by the recent attack on his employee.

“Five years ago I helped residents living in Kagiso who were also affected a hailstorm, but now that they have caused damage to my property, how can I think of helping them again?”

He says that this incident is ironic as the people who want to work and help others are the one’s getting hurt.

“This incident will place a damper on my business as it would probably take three weeks or more to get the vehicle repaired. This vehicle is used to transport dental parts and also to fetch elderly people.”

The NEWS also made contact with Warrant Officer Solomon Sibiya, a police spokesperson for Kagiso to gather more information, however, he was not on duty.

Olivier will be opening a case of attempted murder and a case of malicious damage to property.

Jacobus Myburgh and Kuhle Ziswana

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