South African Defense Forces patrol downtown Johannesburg, South Africa. Picture: AP Photo/Jerome Delay
South African Defense Forces patrol downtown Johannesburg, South Africa. Picture: AP Photo/Jerome Delay

WATCH: Several arrested after police raid clubs and taverns during lockdown

By Staff reporter Time of article published Mar 27, 2020

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Cape Town - Several people have been arrested for allegedly disobeying the country's lockdown rules that officially started at midnight on Thursday. 

South African Police Service (SAPS) raided taverns and clubs where a number of people gathered and were drinking in the early hours of Friday morning, said a SABC report. 

On Monday night, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a three-week national shutdown in a bid to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Ramaphosa warned on Thursday that South Africa could have more than 1 500 confirmed coronavirus cases within the next few days. 

Dressed in full SANDF gear, Ramaphosa addressed the nation and gave final orders to the troops who were deployed to the streets. 

 

Ramaphosa said the government was keeping the majority of the population indoors and it was the task of the SAPS and the SANDF to help curb the rising Covid-19 infection rate. 

"We are placing confidence and trust in all of you. In a few days, we could be at over 1 500. Our task is to minimise the infection rate," he told the soldiers. 

A deserted highway is seen in Cape Town, South Africa after South Africa went into a nationwide lockdown for 21 days. Picture: AP Photo/Nardus Engelbrecht


Confirmed coronavirus infections on Friday morning tipped over the 1000-mark, with two deaths, both in the Western Cape. 

Ahead of the lockdown, Police Minister Bheki Cele warned of consequences for those who attempt to leave their homes, unless for essential purposes, such as buying groceries, seeking medical attention, collecting grants, buying medication, or emergencies.

A police officer chases a man who violated the lockdown downtown Johannesburg. Picture: AP Photo/Jerome Delay


Stores are not permitted to sell alcohol or cigarettes during the 21 days. Anyone who contravenes the lockdown regulations will be found guilty of a criminal offence and will be fined or jailed for a period not exceeding six months, or both.

Restaurants, clubs, taverns and bars must also be closed during this period, as they are not essential services. 

Empty streets with law enforcement and police making sure people adhere to the 21-day lockdown. Picture: Courtney Africa/African News Agency(ANA)
This man was found walking down the street after curfew and was searched and told to make his way home. Video: Courtney Africa/African News Agency(ANA)
Empty streets with law enforcement and police making sure people adhere to the 21-day lockdown. Video: Courtney Africa/African News Agency(ANA)
The first hour after lockdow non the streets of the Joburg CBD. Video: Timothy Bernard/African News Agency(ANA)


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