JOHANNESBURG - Police have fired rubber bullets at protesters demanding free electricity, housing and land in Soweto.
Some residents have been injured.
Residents of Soweto and various other townships threatened to shut the province down ahead of the State of the Province Address by Premier David Makhura.
They say they are fed up with electricity cuts that go on for days.
This comes also a day before Finance Minister Tito Mboweni delivers his budget speech.
Eskom has been cutting power to thousands of Soweto residents.
The area owes the utility billions.
Eskom is owed more than R30-billion from various municipalities and has vowed to be more aggressive in collecting debt from defaulting municipalities.
Meanwhile, various organisations are making their voices heard at the State of the Province Address.
Equal Education is planning to picket and demand that the Premier urgently intervene and address the high number of deaths in Gauteng schools.
Mamelodi flood victims have also threatened to march to the event to tell the Premier that his promise of relocating them is taking too long.