With only two days to go before South Africans take to the polls, the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NATJOINTS) says law enforcement agencies have to date arrested 63 people in 84 reported cases that contravene various sections of the Electoral Act.
The offences committed include public violence, intimidation, assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, common assault, malicious damage to property, including the unlawful removal of posters, police spokesperson Solomon Makgale said on Sunday.
“As a law enforcement body we will continue to employ a zero-tolerance approach to people seeking to derail the elections. The arrest of these 63 people is an indication that any person involved in criminality will be dealt with strictly in accordance with the law,” he said.
He added that law enforcement agencies will continue to stabilise identified problematic areas by conducting crime prevention and combatting operations.
Makgale said experienced prosecutors are readily available to deal with any election-related criminal case generated and give relevant guidance to the investigators.
Despite the arrests, NATJOINTS says it is satisfied with the manner in which people conducted themselves during various political gatherings that took place on Sunday.
“We want to urge all in South Africa to respect every person’s democratic right to cast his or her vote. Our police officers will be deployed at every voting station and we will also be monitoring problematic areas very closely to ensure that these elections are conducted in an environment that is free and fair.” – SAnews.gov.za
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