The Minister of Police, General Bheki Cele has assured the community of Riverlea that police are mobilising all its resources and specialised units to restore law and order in the community.
Today, General Cele led a high level delegation of senior police officers to the area to assess the local police’s responses to illegal mining in the area and other crime challenges raised by the community.
General Cele also engaged with community leaders and locals in the area and assured them that police are constantly devising strategies and operational plans to combat illegal mining operations in various provinces.
Between 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023, 1199 illegal miners were arrested including 100 South Africans, 124 Zimbabweans, 232 Basotho nationals from Lesotho and 79 Mozambicans. R1, 8 million rand, 9 991 rounds of ammunition , 177 vehicles, 7 trucks, 771 digging tools, 5 TLBs, 233 phendukas and 771 digging tools were seized amongst other items.
The Minister of Police, General Bheki Cele says specialised units will be deployed to the area.“These specialised units are being brought in to ensure we apprehend these illegal miners and put a stop to these illegal operations. Our focus is to ensure law and order is restored in this area. We cannot have a situation where communities live in fear, we are going to deal decisively with these criminals”, said General Cele.
Since May 2022, the SAPS ensured the establishment of the Economic Infrastructure Task Teams (EITT). Twenty teams have been set up in hot spot areas to combat illegal mining, prevent damage to critical and essential infrastructure as well as extortion on construction sites.