The eThekwini Municipality says the Durban Metro Police are on high alert following reports of a planned shutdown on Friday. All members have been put on standby to deal with unlawful conduct.
Social media posts are doing the rounds, saying that there will be a national shutdown or a strike. However, the South African National Taxi Council in KwaZulu-Natal has confirmed that it will not be part of a shutdown or a taxi strike against the recent fuel price hike.
Municipality spokesperson, Msawakhe Mayisela, says those who act unlawfully will face the full might of the law.
“Our Mayor is very concerned about the fact that our city is still reeling from the effects of the recent floods. While we are all concerned about the price of petrol, disrupting business and shutting down the country is counterproductive. It will reverse all the gains that we have made following the disruptions related to COVID-19, the July unrest, and the recent floods. The law will take its cause in the event that anyone is disregarding it.”
National Taxi Alliance spokesperson Theo Malele says the government should remove the fuel levies:
The Johannesburg Metro Police Department also says they will be on high alert.
“Police are on high alert for any disruptions or disturbances for the possibility of slow motorcades and disruption of public property. We also can’t rule out any elements of criminality as criminals will want to take advantage of this situation. Operations conducted in the city will be done under the auspice of the SAPS with high police visibility playing a major role in quelling any threats,” says JMPD spokesperson, Xolani Fihla.’
Meanwhile, the City of Cape Town says it has activated its four operations centres to respond to possible violence. Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, JP Smith says they have put contingency measures in place to curb the threat of unrest.
He says officials have compiled a list of potential targets and will ensure that regular patrols take place in hotspot areas.
Smith says law enforcement agencies have also drafted integrated deployment plans in areas that could be affected. He says they’ll work closely with the police to maintain order should the need arise. -Additional reporting by Sashin Naidoo