In The News South Africa

Police reinforcements deployed in Umlazi after social media threats

DURBAN, September 6 – Police operations have been stepped up in Umlazi south of Durban following threats on social media that criminals were gearing up to hijack vehicles and then attack police officers.

The threats apparently come after a gang leader was recently killed in the area.

Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbhele said the threats were being taken seriously and that high visibility operations had been stepped up and police members were taking extra precautions.

“Police will continue with high visibility operations at Umlazi and the surrounding areas following social media messages indicating that criminals are gearing up to hijack the vehicles in the area and attack police officials,” Mbhele said on Wednesday. “Last night, due to the high police visibility in the area, no serious incidents were reported.

“The deployment follows after messages on social media that criminals were encouraged to hijack vehicles and attack police due to the recent killing of a gang leader in Umlazi. Police officers are aware of these threats and have taken extra precautions and necessary steps to prevent such incidents from occurring. Umlazi SAPS have deployed a large contingent of  police officers to deal with these threats and to make sure that the community is safe.”

Mbhele said police would continue with the operations until the “gang leader” was buried. “We will not tolerate people who want to take the law into their own hands and cause panic in our communities. We also discourage community members from idolising criminals and joining them when they fire shots into the air and ‘spin’ cars as these inadvertently can lead to the death of bystanders.”

– African News Agency (ANA)

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