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97 arrested for election crimes

Pretoria - Ninety-seven people have been arrested for election-related crimes and 131 cases registered, the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (Natjoints) said on Wednesday.

“The national commissioner of the SAPS, general Riah Phiyega is personally monitoring the security forces' operations today,” spokesman Lt-Gen Solomon Makgale said in a statement.

A voter receives ballot papers from an election official in Soweto. Photo: Mike Hutchings. Credit: REUTERS

“The Natjoints is appreciative of the festive and peaceful spirit in which citizens of South African have taken to the polls, despite long queues in some areas.”

The Natjoints was made up of the SA Police Service, the SA National Defence Force, the National Prosecuting Authority, the departments of health and international relations and co-operation, Eskom, the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC), the intelligence co-ordination committee and metro police.

Makgale said Natjoints was satisfied with the deployments in place at voting stations around the country.

Speaking to reporters at the IEC results centre in Pretoria earlier, chief electoral officer Mosotho Moepya said voting was proceeding “smoothly, peacefully, and briskly”, although tensions had to be calmed in certain areas in Gauteng and the Western Cape.

Strong security measures were implemented at voting stations in a township in Springs, and in Bekkersdal, where there had been arson attacks; as well as in a Cape Town township and gang-plagued Manenberg on the Cape Flats.

Military vehicles were deployed to Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga, following ANC faction-fighting in recent weeks.

Sapa

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