The Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster (JCPS) says it has concluded all its preparations and is ready for the upcoming general election on May 8.
“We are more than committed to ensuring the safety of all voters and voting stations,” said the Police Minister Bheki Cele on behalf of his cluster.
“We declare that as a cluster we are operationally ready to execute our mandate and ensure a safe and secure environment for free and fair elections to prevail.”
With sporadic protests that have been sweeping the country, most notably, the protests in Tshwane which aimed to shut down the capital city, Johannesburg and Cape Town, Cele said the cluster would be more vigilant. He added that there would be increased police visibility.
“As the JCPS cluster we can assure all South Africans that we have put plans in place to ensure that these elections take place in a free, fair, safe and secure environment,” added Cele.
“The South African Police Service will, during the build-up to the election, on the day of the election and the period after the election, increase police visibility through focused deployments of personnel throughout the country.”
The Police Minister also assured citizens that all the 22 924 voting stations will be operational, ready and secured.
KwaZulu-Natal leads with the most voting stations, registering a total of 4885, followed by the Eastern Cape province with 4791 stations and Limpopo with 3157 voting stations.
“We will continue to deal decisively with the so-called ‘no-go areas’ all voting stations in the country will be accessible to all,” he added. “No protests nor shutdowns will abuse the constitutional rights of South Africans to exercise their democratic rights to vote for the party of their choice.
“As a security cluster, we therefore urge every citizen of this country to act responsibly, observe the laws of our country and to cooperate fully with all law enforcement agencies.”
With a week to go until the rush of the Easter period, the JCPS said it stands ready to ensure proper coordination of all safety and security related activities during this period.
“We trust that the Easter weekend security plan will be carried out successfully and we would also like to call upon all the citizens of this country to conduct themselves in a responsible manner that will not be in conflict with the law,” concluded Cele.