Heightened visibility by law enforcement in Gauteng pre- and during the new year’s eve and crossover, leads to minimum incidents with arrests

PARKTOWN – Police in Gauteng, in partnership with National and Gauteng Traffic Police, Metro Police Departments, and private security partners since Thursday afternoon, 31 December 2020, flooded the streets of Gauteng in the build-up to the New Year’s Eve and cross-over celebrations, tightening the grip on crime in accordance with the Safer Festive Season Operational Plan.
While the New Year’s Eve celebrations of the previous year in Hillbrow and Johannesburg were incident-free with well-behaved and friendly revellers, police would not be complacent and therefore just before mid-night, patrolled the streets of Hillbrow until after the cross-over. For the second year in a row, the residents of Hillbrow cooperated with the police and there were no crime incidents reported.
The Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Elias Mawela, his deputies Major Generals Tommy Mthobeni and Patricia Rampota, as well as the Hawks Provincial Head Major General Ebrahim Kadwa, were joined by Gauteng MEC for Community Safety, Ms Faith Mazibuko and the Chairperson of the Provincial Community Policing Board, Mr TJ Masilela, and visited operations in the Johannesburg District.
When rounding up the outcome of the operations on New Year’s Eve, more than 630 suspects were arrested for various offences across the Province, with over 450 of these arrests made in relation to breaking the regulated curfew, and some for conveying liquor confiscated at different roadblocks conducted in all five districts. About five arrests were effected in relation to the sale of alcohol in contravention of the COVID-19 lockdown regulations. In Soweto, police confiscated liquor in at least 30 incidents where people who were sitting and drinking in the street, fled and abandoned their drinks, chairs, and other property when police approached.
Over 10 suspects were arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol, while other arrests were for possession of drugs, possession of suspected stolen property including a stolen motor vehicle and a hijacked trailer. One suspect at a roadblock in Fourways, north of Johannesburg was arrested for possession of an unlicensed firearm.
Nine businesses were shut down in Tshwane after they were found to be operating after the regulated curfew of 21h00, while three suspects were charged with illegal selling of fireworks.
Among the arrested suspects in the West Rand were two suspects who were found in possession of suspected stolen livestock, and their vehicle was impounded for having been used during the commission of the crime.
Four illegal firearms, four suspected stolen vehicles, a hijacked trailer were recovered during the New Year’s Eve operations while in Ekurhuleni, police seized a Ford Focus that was found to have been reported hijacked in Pretoria West. Police had noticed the suspicious vehicle fitted with police blue lights and a siren and gave chase. The suspects allegedly abandoned the vehicle and fled.
Lieutenant General Mawela commended all five District Commissioners and the Chiefs of other law enforcement agencies, and private security partners for the sustained integrated approach towards tightening the grip on crime not only during the festive season but also throughout the year with the O Kae Molao operations.
The Provincial Commissioner also commended the residents of Gauteng for a generally peaceful New Year’s cross-over and for displaying maximum adherence to the COVID-19 lockdown regulations.

Source: South African Police Service