POLL | Snitching on lockdown lawbreakers, or nah?

04 May 2020 - 13:10 By Unathi Nkanjeni
Citizens are snitching on their neighbours who break the lockdown rules. Stock photo.
Citizens are snitching on their neighbours who break the lockdown rules. Stock photo.
Image: 123RF/luchschen

The arrests of lawbreakers during the Covid-19 nationwide lockdown has intensified as citizens are failing to adhere to the restrictions.

In KwaZulu-Natal, more than 826 people have been arrested since the lockdown eased into level 4 on Friday.

On Monday premier Sihle Zikalala said the majority of arrests in the province had been made during roadblocks.

“The fact that we have progressed to level 4 does not mean regulations are no longer applying,” said Zikalala.

Three foreigners  were arrested at the weekend after they tried to bribe their way out of trouble.

Gauteng MEC for community safety Faith Mazibuko said police received a tip-off that the three were selling cigarettes in Lenasia.

“The three foreign nationals were placed under arrest," she said. "All the cigarette boxes were confiscated to be booked. One of the suspects will be charged with bribery. He was offering R30,000 to the police officers.”

Last month, TimesLIVE reported that more than 15,000 lawbreakers were arrested in Gauteng.

Gauteng police commissioner Lt-Gen Elias Mawela said the lawbreakers had liquor, drugs, and unlicensed firearms.

In Cape Town, the city's mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith, said the city had reported a 400% increase in telephonic complaints about lockdown crimes.

"We also receive around 800 WhatsApp message a day, and about 75% of those are people reporting on others," he said. “The entire city’s eyes and ears are mobilised. Rational, good people are watching others misbehave and are feeling irritated.”