Police ready for poll troublemakers
JOHANNESBURG – SOUTH AFRICA POLICE in Gauteng province have warned groups and individuals against perpetrating political violence ahead of the municipal elections scheduled for next month, saying they will face the full wrath of the law.
Responding to questions from Gauteng, South African Police Service (SAPS) provincial spokesperson, Colonel Lungelo Dlamini, says officers will be out in full force to ensure the potentially explosive polls, run smoothly.
He says the law enforcement agency is working closely with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and the political parties, which the African National Congress (ANC), Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and Democratic Alliance (DA), among others in the province to ensure the parties and their supporters abide by the rules during election campaigns
Dlamini spoke to this publication following the recent violent protests in
the capital Pretoria, where local residents fuming over the ruling ANC’s imposition of mayoral candidate Thoko Didiza ahead of incumbent Kgosientso Ramokgopa.
Police have arrested 13 suspects in connection with the orgy of violence and looting.
Dlamini confirmed three people were killed with more than 20 buses, haulage trucks and private vehicles torched by protesting residents, adding that 12 suspects are scheduled to appear at the Cullinan Magistrate Court on Friday facing charges of murder, arson, malicious damage to property and public violence.
“All the perpetrators have been arrested and they will be facing the full might of the law,” he says.
There also have been several incidents in Pretoria, Tembisa and East Rand where some
members of opposition, particularly from the EFF, have been complaining of being blocked from campaigning freely.
Dlamini reiterated Acting National Police Commissioner
Lieutenant General Khomotso Phahlane,’assertions that the public of the law enforcement was ready to maintain law and order, ahead of the local government elections, which are set for August 3.
Phahlane outlined the law enforcement agency’s strategy and further said that the police were working closely with electoral authorities to ensure the safety of voters and the security of everyone involved.
“Those are the same measures that police at the provincial (Gauteng) level are taking to make sure that there will be a smooth process of the local elections,” Dlamini says.
“No form of intimidation or violence will be allowed. No stone will be left unturned for any person who violates the law and police will use all the available resources to deal with the law breakers,” promised Dlamini.
– CAJ News
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