Police Minister Bheki Cele kicks off his tour of the SAPS’ festive season tour. File Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)
Police Minister Bheki Cele kicks off his tour of the SAPS’ festive season tour. File Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency(ANA)

Bheki Cele’s SAPS Festive Season tour kicks off

By Robin-Lee Francke Time of article published Dec 13, 2021

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Police Minister Bheki Cele has assured that the police are prepared but also urged the public to be alert to criminal activity

CAPE TOWN - Police Minister Bheki Cele assured South Africans of the SAPS’s preparedness, as he kicked off his countrywide South African Police Service (SAPS) Festive Season Inspection tour on Monday.

The SAPS launched its National Safer Festive Season on October 15.

Cele’s tour which kicked off in Limpopo, will end in KwaZulu-Natal on December 22.

Lirandzu Themba, spokesperson for the Ministry of Police, said Cele along with the management team of the SAPS and national and provincial level will be assessing the effectiveness of the resources in areas most needed, to ensure police are ready to deal with crime.

She said the visit forms part of the overall efforts by the SAPS to tighten the grip on contact and violent crimes this festive season.

“Aligned with the festive season theme: extending our reach through blue light visibility, the inspection tour will be focused on visible policing, conducting special crime awareness as well as prevention operations and targeting crimes which are prevalent during the festive period which include crimes against children, gender-based violence, contravention of traffic and road regulations and border security,” Themba said.

Cele said the safer festive season plan is unique to every province.

“We once again usher in the festive season during a pandemic that has been devastating to our country. During this time, police will continue to ensure maximum compliance of the regulations to minimise the spread of the virus.

“We know that criminals will try and take advantage of this time that is usually categorised by festivities, social gatherings and leisure,” he said in a statement.

Cele urged South Africans to remain alert and be aware of their surroundings at all times to avoid becoming easy targets for criminals, adding that officers in all provinces will be at hand and their respective festive season plans will be intensified as the year draws to a close.

“I am sure the police will give criminals a hard time and squeeze out the space for anyone with criminal intent,” Cele added.

The SAPS’ festive season operations are set to conclude on January 31, 2022.

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