File photo: David Ritchie African News Agency (ANA)

The Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster has committed to delivering a free and fair general election come May 8 across the country’s 22 924 voting stations and to ensure that elections occur in a safe and secure environment.

Briefing the media on the state of readiness for the Easter Holidays and the general elections on Thursday, the cluster's Police Minister Bheki Cele said that they would continue to deal decisively with “the so-called no go areas”.

The cluster is made up of the state security, police and home affairs ministries as well as the office of the national commissioner of police.

“All voting stations in the country will be accessible to all and no protests nor shutdowns will abuse the constitutional rights of South Africans to exercise their democratic rights to vote for the party of their choice.

“We have ensured that there is a continuous coordination and cooperation within all spheres of government across the country and all relevant and necessary key role players are hard at work to ensure the successful delivery of the 2019 sixth general election,” Cele said.

Cele said that the South African Police Service (SAPS) would ensure that during the build up to the election, on election day and the period after election day, that there is an increased police visibility “through focused deployments of personnel throughout the country”.

“Through our intelligence structures we have identified a number of hotspots and potentially volatile areas that will be monitored on a continuous basis. These areas will be targeted through intensified operations, informed by thorough analysis and intelligence based deployments,” Cele said.

KwaZulu-Natal is leading in the top three of the provinces with the most number of voting stations with 4885 voting stations while the Eastern Cape has 4791 and Limpopo has 3157.

He said that they also wanted to ensure that their security plan for the Easter weekend would be carried out successfully and called on the public to conduct themselves in a responsible manner that would not be in conflict with the law.

Political Bureau