The Police Ministry says its confident in the SAPS’ ability to attend to any eventualities that may occur during voting in the local government elections on Monday,1 November 2021, particularly at identified hot-spot areas.
Police officers have been deployed to several areas in Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern and Western Cape and Gauteng have been flagged as ones of concern. This is partly due to the rise in politically-related violence that has been reported in these areas ahead of the municipal elections.
BHEKI CELE: HOT-SPOT AREAS TO BE MONITORED
Police Minister Bheki Cele says he is sure that the SAPS in the various provinces including KZN and Mpumalanga, have put measures in place to ensure the safety of voters, IEC officials, and the public in general.
“These provinces have received additional SAPS officers ahead of the elections and not only that, law enforcement agencies including the SANDF will be working hand in glove with police as force multipliers. The provinces have put together solid plans informed by intelligence driven analysis and this gives me confidence that those plans will result in citizens casting their votes freely, with little to no disruptions,” he said.
Cele visited KZN and Mpumalanga this weekend where he was taken through the SAPS local government elections deployment plan, which focuses on how police will deal with all eventualities, especially at identified hot-spot areas.
“In areas where IEC officials are not able to perform their duties due to safety fears and threats from communities, SAPS officers who have been trained by the Electoral Commission remain on standby to take over from these officers at voting stations. This is already the case in the Ugu district in KZN where election related violence broke out and resulted in the injury of a police officer from a gunshot to the leg in Mistake Farm. While police will be on hand to ensure voting goes ahead as planned, they will not be letting their gaurd down in policing other crimes.”
Police Minister Bheki Cele
The Police Ministry says the heightened deployment in identified areas during Election Day, will remain in place, until the election results are announced on 4 November.