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Covid-19 shuts another Cape police station

File picture: Se-Anne Rall

File picture: Se-Anne Rall

Published May 13, 2020


Cape Town – The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) is considering ways to improve the health and safety

of its members after another police station in the Western Cape has temporarily closed due to positive cases of Covid-19.

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A member tested positive on Monday at Lingelethu West police station in Khayelitsha. It follows confirmed cases at Lwandle station in Strand, as well as Somerset West and Langa.

Police spokesperson Novela Potelwa said Lingelethu West station has relocated operations to the nearby Khayelitsha Resource Centre.

“The relocation is to allow the decontamination of the facility in line with Covid-19 protocols. It is also to ensure that service delivery continues,” Potelwa said.

“The number for those who wish to contact the station is 0798809894. Police members who have been in contact with the infected case are quarantined and are undergoing the necessary screening and testing.”

Popcru provincial secretary Mncedisi Mbolekwa said it has been considering “numerous proposals” on how to improve the workplace of its members.

“Despite the efforts to ensure personal protective equipment are widely available, we have seen an increase in infections,” Mbolekwa said.

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“As front-line workers, our members are adversely affected and worried by this. And we have been considering numerous proposals which we believe can turn the environment for the better. We need regular screening, testing, sanitation and decontamination processes.

“This should be accompanied by ensuring those who break lockdown rules are not cramped into the already crowded holding cells, but instead pay admission of guilt fines.”

In a joint meeting of parliamentary committees on Friday, Police Minister Bheki Cele said that as many as 253 police officers had tested positive for the coronavirus.

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Of those confirmed cases, 178 were in the Western Cape, Cele added.

He said the Eastern Cape had 13 cases, with 11 in Gauteng and eight in KwaZulu-Natal, while the remaining infections were spread across the other provinces.

The SAPS hierarchy are equally concerned at the increasing number of officers who have been infected, Cele added.

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“The committee developed protocols and SAPS members are screened on a daily basis in line with Department of Health protocols. 

"Where there are reported positive cases, all members in direct contact get tested and sent to quarantine immediately,” he said.

Cape Times

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