Top cop says SA is ready for elec­tions

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - VIRGILLATTE GWANGWA

THE state is ready for the up­com­ing elec­tions, says SAPS act­ing na­tional com­mis­sioner Lieu­tenant-Gen­eral Kgomotso Phahlane.

Speak­ing at a me­dia brief­ing at SAPS Tsh­wane Academy yes­ter­day, he said the elec­toral process was one of the im­por­tant fea­tures of all demo­cratic so­ci­eties.

“The elec­toral process is the right that we as South Africans have fought long and hard for, and we de­serve to ex­er­cise this hard-won right with pride and dig­nity,” he said.

Ev­ery­one had a re­spon­si­bil­ity to con­trib­ute to­wards the con­duct­ing of free, fair, safe and se­cure elec­tions.

He said the SAPS man­date de­manded po­lice of­fi­cials lead in a process of se­cur­ing the elec­tions and al­low­ing South Africans to cast their demo­cratic votes with­out fear of in­tim­i­da­tion.

“Polic­ing does not crim­i­nate, so any­one who mis­be­haves, ir­re­spec­tive of their po­lit­i­cal af­fil­i­a­tion, will be dealt with ac­cord­ingly,” Phahlane warned.

He urged South Africans to tol­er­ate one an­other’s dif­fer­ent po­lit­i­cal af­fil­i­a­tions, and to abide by the coun­try’s laws at all times.

“The SAPS will un­com­pro­mis­ing in dis-


be the en­force­ment of the rel­e­vant acts and un­der no cir­cum­stances will we al­low the car­ry­ing of pro­hib­ited or dan­ger­ous weapons by any mem­ber of the pub­lic,” Phahlane added.

They had iden­ti­fied a num­ber of hot spots and po­ten­tially volatile ar­eas that would be mon­i­tored on a con­tin­u­ous ba­sis. He would not how­ever dis­close th­ese for se­cu­rity rea­sons.

“Th­ese ar­eas will be tar­geted through in­ten­si­fied op­er­a­tions, in­formed by thor­ough anal­y­sis

will be tar­geted in­ten­si­fied op­er­a­tions in­formed by thor­ough anal­y­sis

and in­tel­li­gence-based de­ploy­ments,” Phahlane said.

They would also not al­low a sit­u­a­tion where the pub­lic was threat­ened by a few in­di­vid­u­als.

“We are in the process of polic­ing po­lit­i­cal gath­er­ings for all po­lit­i­cal par­ties to en­sure all po­lit­i­cal par­ties are safe dur­ing their cam­paigns,” he added.

The po­lice were not con­cerned about their ca­pac­ity to po­lice the 22 612 vot­ing sta­tions coun­try­wide, and he as­sured all South Africans the elec­tions would take place in a free, fair, safe and se­cure en­vi­ron­ment.

“SAPS would also work hand in hand with other law-en­force­ment agen­cies in the coun­try, and key role play­ers from re­spec­tive safety and se­cu­rity struc­tures,” Phahlane said.

‘Th­ese ar­eas

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