NEWS
21/04/2018 06:46 SAST | Updated 21/04/2018 06:48 SAST

Mahikeng Chaos: Ramaphosa Vows Swift, Rational Action

"We want to base our decisions on evidence, proper analysis and evaluation, so when we come to a decision, we have looked at everything from all sides," Ramaphosa said.

People are pictured after clashes with South African police on April 20, 2018, as protest continued for a second day in the northwestern province capital of Mahikeng.
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People are pictured after clashes with South African police on April 20, 2018, as protest continued for a second day in the northwestern province capital of Mahikeng.

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday evening assured residents of protest-stricken Mahikeng and the greater North West that government and ANC officials were working with urgency to resolve the issues that had been raised.

Addressing a media briefing in Mahikeng, he said they had had extensive input on challenges and problems from various parties, including members of the legislature, the provincial executive committee and Premier Supra Mahumapelo.

He said the "serious" issues raised concerned the position of the premier, governance and corruption in the province.

MUJAHID SAFODIEN/AFP/Getty Images
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa addresses the media after a meeting on April 20, 2018, as protest continued for a second day in the South African North West province capital of Mahikeng.

"Having listened to all the inputs, we have decided we would like to engage further with a number of people, particularly members of the community here in Mahikeng and the North West," he said.

"These matters clearly will be discussed in government and also on a governing party level."

Ramaphosa said the issues would be analysed so that rational decisions could be made.

"This is the way we work. We want to base our decisions on evidence, proper analysis and evaluation, so when we come to a decision, we have looked at everything from all sides."

MUJAHID SAFODIEN/AFP/Getty Images
Bystanders and foreign nationals stand at a crossroad on April 20, 2018, as protest continued for a second day in the North West province capital of Mahikeng.

Violence erupted in Mahikeng when protesters took to the streets to demand that Mahumapelo resign or be recalled by the party's leadership.

Ramaphosa cut short his trip to London, where he was attending the Commonwealth heads of state summit, to convene an urgent meeting in the town on Friday.

He said they would act speedily but was not able to give an exact time frame at present.

MUJAHID SAFODIEN/AFP/Getty Images
Children play around a vandalised ATM in North West Province on April 20, 2018, as protest continued for a second day in province capital of Mahikeng.

To residents of Mahikeng and the province, he called for calm and desisting from violence and destruction of property.

"This matter is going to be resolved. It is only when we discuss matters in an orderly manner, and deal with them in that way that we are able to find solutions. Let us be calm, let us revert to a position of normalcy as we address this matter and reach finality."

-- News24