Cele warns against intimidation ahead of next week’s national shutdown

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Police Minister, Bheki Cele has warned against spreading messages of fear and intimidation on social media platforms, in the lead-up to next week’s national shutdown, saying inciting violence is a criminal offence.

Monday’s national shutdown, being organised by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), is due to call on President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign and for an end to rolling blackouts.

Speaking during a post-Cabinet media briefing, Cele said: “We also want to caution against spreading messages of fear, intimidation and inflammatory statements that could incite violence. This is a criminal offence. We are aware of many social media accounts, claiming that thousands of followers are being mobilised to support the protests and we want to encourage our people not to believe everything they read on social media. We will act swiftly and decisively against any threats of disruption.

VIDEO | Cabinet briefs media on measures to minimise the impact of the national shutdown:

Meanwhile, Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni has warned all those who will be participating in the planned national shutdown to ensure that there is no public violence and intimidation.

She says South Africa is a country governed by the laws and constitution, therefore no amount of anarchy will be tolerated on Monday, during the protest.

Yesterday, EFF leader Julius Malema confirmed that the protest will indeed take place irrespective of those who imply that it will descend into chaos.

But Ntshavheni insists that the call for President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign will not be enforced by anyone, “Regime change through unconstitutional means will not be tolerated in South Africa.”

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