It’s not often that we leave the office so late, but last night, it was a wise move. Traffic outside was a nightmare. From about 16:30 onwards, nothing moved for at least a couple hours. What had happened was that Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) were protesting against nepotism and poor salaries, (as read on News24) and since their demands were not met, they blocked all the major routes out of the CBD.
The South African Police Service (SAPS) finally had to try disperse them, using rubber bullets. However, the JMPD responded irresponsibly, considering the civilians in the vicinitiy, by firing live ammunition. Luckily, there were only minor injuries sustained by a few members of the JMPD. That is, according to the article above.
Since we had decided to wait it out at the office, with several of our colleagues, Marc and a couple guys decided to take a walk to Romans Pizza to buy dinner. He said that cars were bumper to bumper everywhere he looked. They did not have to wait for cars to go past at an intersection. Instead, they had to squeeze betwen them to get over the road.
And believe it or not, even with everything bumper to bumper, criminals still took advantage and one driver was hijacked. The funny thing was, all they wanted was his car. They made him leave his vehicle and then searched it, throwing out three laptops before getting away with the car. Of course, the guy picked these up and started walking.
We finally went home at 20:00 without incident. Unfortunately, it seems there may be more protest actions today. Let’s hope we don’t have a repeat of last night and another long night at the office, awaiting the gridlock to clear…