More than 10 000 people have been arrested for various contraventions of the national lockdown since it began on 27 March, KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala said on Monday.
"There are more than 10 000 in KwaZulu-Natal. People are charged. This is not just going to be a question of being charged, and you are let go. We are adhering to the law and enforcing it," he said at a roadblock in KwaMashu.
According to Zikalala, the majority of arrests were people who had travelled without valid permits.
"That is why there is this number of arrests."
He announced on Sunday, during a press briefing, that the province's epicentre of Covid-19 infections was in the eThekwini metro, which is home to 383 of the 534 cases across the province.
Zikalala said that roadblocks had been set up from early on Monday morning.
JUST IN: There are over 10 000 arrests in KZN since the beginning of the #SouthAfricaLockdown @News24 @TeamNews24 pic.twitter.com/i2kYjRhNOF— Kaveel Singh (@kaveels) April 20, 2020
"From 04:00, we had 30 roadblocks covering all areas coming into the CBD and areas in townships and suburbs. So far, more than 100 arrests have been made. In this area alone (KwaMashu), 14 arrests have been made.
"The majority are adhering, but there are those who are travelling up and down without permits and not following regulations, hence the roadblocks are taking place."
Zikalala said there would be ramped up patrols in all parts of the city.
"We are patrolling suburbs and townships. There are those selling alcohol and we will be patrolling and doing checks in those areas to stop this."
He said the roadblocks would continue until people adhered to the lockdown.
'Stay at home'
"There are roadblocks in all parts of the city. It is not just for today, but will be carrying on until we are satisfied that all the people of eThekwini adhere to regulation."
The message to residents was clear, Zikalala said.
"Stay at home and adhere to regulations. We want to see eThekwini flattening the curve."
He said there wasn't a specific area in the city where there was a hotspot.
"All townships and suburbs are our hotspots. eThekwini as a whole is a hotspot. The numbers are increasing in the north, south and west."
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