FRANCISTOWN: The Department of Road and Transport Safety offices in Francistown became chaotic yesterday when customers lost control and became violent. The police, called in to calm irate clients, did not find it easy to contain the angry mob.
Eyewitnesses say trouble started in the morning as people complained that they were not being serviced. One of the customers, Thunu Kepaletswe says that he has been visiting DRTS since last Thursday but has still not been served.
"Those people who started are not even here they have already been helped and gone. They broke the gate and almost injured people with it," he said. The large white gate to the main entrance was broken by the mob which then proceeded to get help inside.
Kepaletswe appealed to government to do something about DRTS service otherwise people would hurt each other."If there are no resources yet this office can meanwhile find a way to help people effectively by simply empowering other offices that are outside of Francistown with more resources," he added. Another frustrated customer said that he has to renew his expired driving license but can never seem to get inside the offices, while he still gets penalised for failing to renew it on time.
"Everyday that I do not renew means money but I can never seem to get inside and the only time I did get inside, I could not get any help," he said. Angry clients all echoed similar sentiments. Francistown DRTS is one of the offices that people dread going to because of long queues and the apparent lack of organisation.
The police, who had come to attend to the scene, had their hands full as people even tried to push their way past them into the offices. Shots were fired into the air but nothing seemed to change as everyone was determined to be served.
Many customers ended up leaving because the situation seemed hopeless. Kutlwano Police Station commander Superintendent Rodney Nkokwe said police went to the DRTS offices after they received a report that there was a disturbance there. Efforts to talk to DRTS station manager Selela Tshwene proved futile, as his phone rang unanswered.