Multiple arrests effected following sporadic acts of looting and violence.
PRETORIA – The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NatJOINTS) today strongly condemned the sporadic acts of violence in some parts of South Africa but also confirmed over 110 arrests.
Since yesterday, sporadic acts of violence were committed in relation to trucks in some provinces and in totally unrelated incidents, there were acts of looting and damage to property at businesses in and around the city of Johannesburg.
However, at least 20 people have been arrested in connection with the attacks on trucks, truck drivers, possession of firearms and dangerous weapons and blocking of roads in the harbour of Richard’s Bay, Malvern (outside Durban) and in the areas of Northern KwaZulu-Natal.
In Gauteng, more than 90 people were arrested after looting shops and damaging property in Johannesburg and surrounding areas.
These acts of violence are purely criminal and must be condemned in the strongest possible terms. These suspects will be brought before courts in their respective areas on a variety of charges including attempted murder, public violence, unlawful possession of arms and ammunition and/or malicious damage to property. The NatJOINTS is calling for maximum sanctions to be imposed on all those found guilty in a court of law.
In the meantime, the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure has put additional measures in place to ensure that such acts are not repeated.
While all affected areas have been stabilised, the one disconcerting fact is that people continue to circulate old pictures and videos depicting grossly violent acts which has the potential of sparking further violent responses. Furthermore, some or all of these pictures have not even been confirmed to have been recorded in South Africa.
People are urged to act responsibly and give due respect to the lives and property to others even when posting misleading pictures and videos.