Durban Metro Police step up patrols, roadblocks to ensure residents abide by lockdown rules
Durban - eThekwini Municipality has announced that Metro Police will be stepping up patrols and roadblocks around the city to ensure that residents adhere to the lockdown regulations.
City spokesperson, Msawakhe Mayisela, said on Wednesday that those caught flouting the law will be prosecuted.
"The municipality has undertaken a zero-tolerance approach and will not hesitate to charge non-complaint members of the public. President Cyril Ramaphosa imposed the lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus, declared as a global disaster. The national lockdown regulation falls under the Disaster Management Act 57/2002. All citizens are instructed to stay within the confines of their homes unless it is to access essential services like purchasing groceries or acquiring medical services. All gatherings are strictly prohibited," he said.
Mayisela said officers had been deployed to all areas of the city and numerous people were arrested for leaving their homes for non-essential reasons.
He said the city was aware of a video doing the rounds on social media depicting residents in Newlands East confronting police officers.
“We would like to clarify that the police officers were in pursuit of two suspects in a vehicle in the Pinetown area. The car was being operated in a reckless manner and had no licence. Their chase led them to the Newlands area where the perpetrators had mobilised community members to attack the officers present," said head of Metro Police, Steve Middleton.
Middleton said charges were brought against three individuals, including assault, malicious damage to property and contravention of the Disaster Management Act 57/2002. The driver was charged with inconsiderate driving, failing to stop when instructed to do so and contravening the Disaster Management Act 57/2002.
“This is unacceptable behaviour. Everyone needs to abide by the lockdown. Situations like these make the work of essential service employees more difficult and exposes both officers and members of the community to potential risks," he said.
Middleton also urged people to stop spreading false messages on social media.