PICS: SANDF to back up Nongoma cops in recovering looted goods
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DURBAN - THE people of Nongoma in KZN have started returning looted goods, following calls made by Police Minister Bheki Cele that failure to return stolen properties will result in possible arrest and criminal records.
Cele’s call on looters to voluntarily surrender stolen property or face possible arrest and criminal records, was also reiterated by the police and local leadership in Nongoma.
Nongoma mayor Albert Mncwango said they were expecting the army who would back-up police in recovering the loot.
“We are expecting the SANDF members to join us today to back up the police in our operation khipha i-receipt (Operation Show Us the Receipt),” Mncwango said. He said the loot had to be fully recovered in order to remind people that crime did not pay.
“Even though we are still at the early stage, a lot has been recovered. We are fully behind the police in the recovery operation and we are also putting pressure on them to get everything back,” he said.
He said that they worked through tip-offs and voluntary surrender but would soon begin with the raids.
Among the goods recovered so far were bed mattresses; television sets; couches; fridges; sound systems; computer screens; laptops; steel frames; aluminium windows; grocery; and clothing items.
The mayor said they were currently using the town’s multi-purpose centre as a warehouse to ensure that local business people were able to get stock.
The Police Minister commended people who had voluntarily surrendered the stolen goods. He also issued a stern warning against those who kept stolen property.
“Those who choose to keep these stolen ware in their homes are being warned that the law will not have mercy on them,” Cele said.
There was currently amnesty for those who voluntarily return items that were looted during the violent protests that engulfed KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
Earlier this week, Cele personally joined security forces in Durban’s business district as they responded to tip-offs from community members on the whereabouts of suspected stolen property looted during last week’s unrest in the province.
The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure has welcomed the influx of calls and tip-offs received via the MySAPS app from various communities in both KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, which have seen the integrated security forces recover volumes of suspected stolen property whose value is yet to be determined.
Meanwhile, in KwaZulu-Natal, 92 suspects have been arrested over the weekend for being in possession of stolen property.