The Gauteng Department of Community Safety has commended the role of community patrollers during the Covid-19 lockdown period. This follows the arrest of two suspects found with over 200 South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) social grant cards and money at Thabong Mall, Sebokeng on Wednesdayafternoon.
It is alleged the suspects were seen withdrawing cash using various SASSA cards at an ABSA ATM near the Spar Supermarket at the mall. The South African Police Service(SAPS) followed a tip off from patrollers deployed at the mall to bust the suspects. Suspects are believed to be loan sharks who took SASSA cards from their owners.
The department has deployed over 3000 Community Patrollers to assist during the Covid-19 lockdown. Department spokesperson Ofentse Morwane told Gauteng News thedeployment of community patrollers aimed to ensure compliance with regulations and adherence to the Disaster Management Act.
“The deployment of community patrollers augurs well in our efforts to improve the safety levels of our citizens especially during this global pandemic. Community patrollers are the first line of defence and a force multiplier in ensuring that our streets and homes are safe at all times.
“They have been working tirelessly to turn the tide against crime and ensuring adherence to the lockdown regulations” said Morwane.
Morwane added and said that patrollers are also deployed in identified crime hotspots across the province.
“In other areas, patrollers are tasked with ensuring the safety of community members which include stop and searches for any dangerous weapons, provide general information on the surroundings as well as safety tips. The community patrollers are located at police stations and they complement the work of the police,” said Morwane.
Morwane said suspects are currently detained at the Sebokeng police station while investigation continues.