Minister of Police Bheki Cele speaking during the launch of the provincial safer festive season at Joubert Park. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)

JOHANNESBURG - Police Minister General Bheki Cele on Friday said that bail was one of the hindrances to justice in South Africa.

“Bail is an animal. We have cases of bail for rape and abuse [for] multiple times. We have 57 people out on bail who were involved in cash heists. As soon as they are released, they gather and plan another heist or they go back and abuse their victim,” said Cele. 

He urged police to take heed in the manner in which they dealt with rape and abuse survivors cautioning against policing their clothing and encouraging them to fix things with their abuser. 

“They will report the matter once and twice and won’t come back the third time because they will be dead. It is not the police’s duty to intervene because they have no business in doing so,” he said. 

The South African Police Service (SAPS) vowed to make this coming festive season safer, more pleasant and bearable for Johannesburg residents. 

Cele was speaking at the launch of the festive season campaign which took place at Joubert Park, an area in the CBD that is engulfed with crime, corruption and drugs. 

The campaign was aimed at combating crime, enhancing border security, creating awareness at social drinking places during the festive season as well as roadblocks and stop-and-go operations. 

Prior to the launch, Cele said he and other police personnel had been on the streets from 2am on Friday morning conducting counterfeit goods raids, roadblocks and sting operations.  

“There won’t be jobs when there are foreigners filled in the place. If all the items (counterfeit goods) there would be sewn in a normal market, so many people would get jobs," he said.

“It is important as police and law enforcement agencies to enforce the law. They must not take as granted and throw stones at us and think that it will end there and when we (SAPS) responds they say we are xenophobic. We are not here to play but do our jobs.”

Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela said they had mobilized police from all districts to work on the campaign and it would be a strategic and not tactical plan.

He added that drugs, gender-based violence and human trafficking was a volatile issue. 

“I hope it will give hope to all the people of Gauteng. We will work with securities around, the business community and squeeze the oxygen out of criminals. Our objective is to reduce the crime stats and increase that of illegal firearms and hijacked vehicles.”

Johannesburg Metro Police Department Chief, David Tembe said police needed to take their duty on the streets more seriously by not only asking for licenses and testing for alcohol but also search the boot because someone might be dead in there. 

African News Agency (ANA)