Police Minister Bheki Cele says more than 207 000 people have been arrested for contravening lockdown regulations.

Addressing the National Council of Provinces on Tuesday, Cele said compliance levels were better at the start of lockdown Level 5, but they worsened at Level 3, which began on June 1.

In the video below, South Africans arrested for violating lockdown rules: 

 

The wearing of masks and social distancing were the main non-compliance issues authorities had to deal with. He adds that the relaxing of the prohibition on the sale of alcohol has also led to non-compliance. Minister Cele says there had also been a marked increase in crime in Level 3.

Responding to concerns that some people will end up with criminal records for minor transgressions, Cele agreed that something should be done for this not to happen.

“The Minister of Justice has come to the police and to see how we can look to those cases that were really petty so that we don’t give South Africans criminal records. But there are those that were serious criminals. We found them transporting cigarettes that were illegal. Those who were working with organised cartels, those will have to stay with their criminal records. But the others the Minister of Justice is looking at that, ” says Cele.