Foreign nationals, some with babies, arrested as Cele joins festive season operations in Limpopo

2018-12-20 21:53
Police Minister Bheki Cele. (Adrian de Kock, Netwerk24)

Police Minister Bheki Cele. (Adrian de Kock, Netwerk24)

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Police Minister Bheki Cele visited Limpopo, where plenty of criminal activities and traffic violations have been uncovered since the start of the festive season.

Cele joined the police and traffic officers on the N1 outside Polokwane, where he stopped a minibus taxi en route to Johannesburg.

He found that none of the passengers in the vehicle had authentic documentation to be in the country.

"Everyone in the kombi was a foreign national and [no] papers whatsoever. As South African authorities, we need to act.

"Among them were very small babies. We are arresting the mothers. It is an unfortunate situation, but South Africa is a sovereign state and we have our own integrity. We must respect these things," Cele said.

On Wednesday, the Limpopo Public Transport Unit stopped a 22-seater minibus on the N1 outside Polokwane.

Upon inspection, they found 44 passengers and seven children crammed into the minibus. The minibus was travelling from Johannesburg and was headed for Zimbabwe. 

Read more here: Double trouble: Taxi driver arrested for squeezing 44 people into 22-seater vehicle

Provincial Department of Transport spokesperson, Matome Moremi-Taueatsoala, said: "We called the cross-border officials to come and authenticate the papers, but the driver did not have the permit to drive this kind of vehicle."

Another minibus with the capacity to carry 15 passengers was impounded when it was found that there were 24 people on board in Mokopane on Tuesday. The minibus was also travelling from Johannesburg to Zimbabwe.

A total of 17 minibus taxis have been impounded since the beginning of this week for various infringements.

In addition, several people were arrested for drinking and driving, speeding and reckless driving, among others.

Limpopo Transport MEC Makoma Makhurupetje said: "We want to thank our traffic officers for a good job. Well done by effecting these arrests.

"By effecting these arrests, we are setting an example to other motorists that we [will] not tolerate reckless driving as Limpopo remains a zero-tolerant zone."

On Wednesday, 117 people were arrested for various crimes and several stolen goods were seized. The goods included LED TVs, cellphones and firearms.

Read more on:    polokwane  |  crime

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