By Kaya 959 News
More than 3000 people have been arrested in connection with violent riots that played out in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal last week. A total of 212 people, 32 in Gauteng and 180 in KZN, have been killed.
“By yesterday (Sunday), 3 407 suspects had been arrested on various charges since the violence erupted. Only one suspect was granted bail and 1 122 more are expected to appear in different courts in the two most affected provinces,” said SAPS national spokesperson, Maj/Gen Mathapelo Peters.
She said the remaining dockets are under investigation.
Three ‘instigators’ arrested
Police have also confirmed that three people have since been taken into custody for allegedly instigating the unrest.
Police Minister Bheki Cele said more arrests are expected.
He told the media that other names have been given to security forces. Cele said they are not going to release their names until they have appeared in court.
According to reports, they are not part of the 12 people initially identified by police.
During his address to the nation last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa called the unrest “a failed insurrection”.
Ramaphosa travelled to KZN last week where he conducted an oversight visit to areas affected by the looting.
“What is most devastating is the toll that these events have taken on people’s lives, livelihoods and sense of security. The human toll will take much longer to repair. It is clear now that the events of the past week were nothing less than a deliberate, coordinated and well-planned attack on our democracy. The constitutional order of our country is under threat,” he said.
Ramaphosa said the current instability and ongoing incitement to violence constitutes a direct contravention of the Constitution and the rule of law.
“These actions are intended to cripple the economy, cause social instability and severely weaken – or even dislodge – the democratic state. Using the pretext of a political grievance, those behind these acts have sought to provoke a popular insurrection,” he said.
Ramaphosa added those behind the attacks have sought to exploit the social and economic conditions under which many South Africans live – conditions that have worsened since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic – and to provoke ordinary citizens and criminal networks to engage in opportunistic acts of looting.
“The ensuing chaos is used as a smokescreen to carry out economic sabotage through targeted attacks on trucks, factories, warehouses and other infrastructure necessary for the functioning of our economy and the provision of services to our people,” he noted.
Protests began in KwaZulu-Natal last week after former president Jacob Zuma handed himself over to officials at a correctional facility in Estcourt where he began his 15-months imprisonment.