Eastern Cape police arrested 1181 people for various crimes during the Easter period crime blitz.
Provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga said that their main focus was targeting “crime generators” and ensuring high police visibility as part of their crime prevention strategy.
Ntshinga said that their key crime targets included robbery and hijacking.
“These successes are important in the prevention of crime and the overall rooting out of crime. Every firearm removed from the hands of criminals is a victory to us. The misuse of alcohol plays a major role in crime incidents such as murder, attempted murder and rape. The policing of alcohol outlets and closing down of illegal outlets remains a priority in the prevention of these crimes,” she said yesterday.
The figure includes arrests across the province from April 10 to 18.
Ntshinga said that during their blitz, police confiscated 33 firearms and closed 25 illegal taverns while confiscating 1 800 litres of alcohol.
In addition, Ntshinga said: “Good progress is being made in the curbing of gang activities in the northern areas of Port Elizabeth and last week 10 suspects linked to gangs and the drug trade were arrested and two illegal firearms seized. We will continue to hunt down those involved in gang-related crime and nothing will deter us from our efforts to stop them from terrorising our communities.”
Ntshinga also highlighted the ambush of Constables Nceba Takayi, 43, and German Makhanya, 37, in Kwazakhele at 5pm on Monday.
Takayi was shot in the leg. Alleged robber Lungisile Mjolweni, 28, and an accomplice attempted to steal their guns when they stopped outside a house in Ngqondela Street, Kwazakhele.
Mjolweni was killed in the shoot-out and was labelled by police as one of the areas most wanted murder and robbery suspects.
“We also wish Constable Nceba Takayi a speedy recovery after he and his colleague survived a brutal attack by two armed suspects in Kwazakhele yesterday. I am proud of these two members who were operationally alert and ready to fight back,” she said.