Pretoria – Limpopo police have arrested over 50 undocumented people during Operation Kukula, after setting up roadblocks in so-called hotspot areas around Thohoyandou at the weekend.
Provincial police spokesperson Colonel Malesela Ledwaba said the crime-fighting operation was focused mainly on individuals without proper immigration documents.
“The operation was executed through intensified roadblocks, including on the R524 road, stop and searches, tracing of wanted suspects, as well as high visibility and patrols at hotspot areas.
“This included raiding of liquor outlets, shebeens second-hand goods and tracing of wanted suspects,” Ledwaba said.
During the operation, police arrested 100 suspects between the ages of 23 and 52 for crimes ranging from assault, violation of protection orders, robberies, possession of dagga, possession of counterfeit goods, public drinking and driving under the influence of alcohol.
Ledwaba said 110 fines were issued for contravening the Road Traffic Act, a further 15 were issued for contravening the Second Hand Goods Act, and four were issued for contravening the Customs Duty Act.
“Moreover, nine shebeens were closed, six fines were issued for trading without a license, and one shop was closed for failure to comply with municipal by-laws.”
Ledwaba said Operation Kukula would be conducted in other districts, including Sekhukhune, Mopani and Waterberg.
On Friday last week, civic organisations marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria demanding a mass deportation of all illegal immigrants.
The marchers claimed illegal immigrants were destroying the country's infrastructure, siphoning off resources and flooding communities with drugs.
David Ratladi, president of the Inwoners Baagi Civic Organisation, said various civic movements, non-governmental organisations and forums had gathered to demand the intervention of the president and law enforcement in dealing with what they called the severe problem of illegal immigrants.
Ratladi said the country was battling “unacceptably” high levels of unemployment due to a high influx of undocumented foreigners, who he claimed were taking all available jobs.