Presidency explains heavy police, SANDF deployment

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Presidential spokesperson Vincent Magwenya says the deployment of heavy police forces and the South African National Defence Force is an attempt to ensure that South Africans are protected during the nationwide shutdown tomorrow.

The EFF along with the support of the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu), among others, is expected to embark on national protest action calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign.

The party’s protest is also against the rolling blackouts.

Last week, the security cluster announced measures to mitigate against the impact of the strike action.

“The state has a responsibility to protect critical infrastructure. The state has a responsibility to ensure that citizens can go on about their day tomorrow in a normal way and when doing so, that they are safe and that they are not subjected to any anarchy or any form of violence. The president has stated that as much as the right to protest is guaranteed and protected under our constitution, equally that right is not absolute and that right is not a ticket to any form of anarchy or violence,” says Magwenya.

Western Cape authorities will deploy law enforcement agencies in strategic places such as at National Key Points and hotspot areas during the planned national shutdown.

The EFF is calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign and for everyone who is concerned about the rolling blackouts, rising cost of living, corruption, crime and gender-based violence, to join Monday’s march.

The security cluster in the Western Cape briefed the media on the state of readiness for the EFF protest.

The Western Cape government has vowed to use an integrated approach to deal with potential violence and ensure a quick response to any incidents.

The police say they will work closely with intelligence services and community policing forums, as well as use aerial resources and CCTV, monitor information in cyber networks and rely on the deployment of the SANDF for support.

Social media users have been warned not to share inflammatory messages that incite violence.

Police say they expect protesters to conform to the law.

“The law gives us powers to guide the law and if you don’t adhere then you give us powers to enforce the law. We are not going to arrest them if anyone is marching. But if they don’t follow (the law) then we will effect arrest. We will guard all strategic national key points such as the airports and the legislature such as parliament and the city hall,” says Western Cape Provincial Police Commissioner Lt General Thembisile Patekile.

The provincial government says it will not allow the march to impact the economy.

“If we want to fight for economic freedom then we must keep the economy open, and allow jobs to be created. Closing down economy and taking jobs away doesn’t make sense to me. That was the gist of making the interdict. We want to thank Santaco and Golden Arrows to the business that came out and said yes, we will be open and trade. We want to say please go ahead with your normal day,” says Western Cape Premier Alan Winde,.

Police have called on citizens to work closely with them and report criminality.

VIDEO: Western Cape govt. on state of readiness for EFF national shutdown