South Africa Says Recovered Looted Goods Will Be Destroyed To Protect Economy
Following the massive looting that occured last week, South Africa’s government has announced that all recovered looted goods will be destroyed in order to protect the country’s economy.
According to South Africa’s presidency, the recovered looted goods will only be destroyed after being used as evidence in criminal cases. The looted goods will be used to secure convictions against people arrested for taking part in the looting.
South Africa was rocked by protests which degenerated into violence and looting. The looting mainly occured in the provinces of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
The decision to destroy the recovered looted goods was announced by acting Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni. According to SABC News, Ntshaveni said that reselling the looted goods would negatively affect South Africa’s economy. Thus, the decision to have all the recovered goods destroyed.
The protests were sparked by the arrest of former president Jacob Zuma. The 79-year-old is serving a 15-month jail sentence handed to him by the Constitutional Court for contempt of court.
At least 212 people are reported to have died while over 2 000 others have been arrested.
The South African Police Services said that the value of the stolen property is yet to be ascertained. National police spokesperson Mathapelo Peters said,
“Looters called upon to voluntarily surrender looted property or face possible arrest and criminal records as the integrated recovery operations continue. The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NatJOINTS) has welcomed the influx of calls and tip-offs received via the MySAPS app from various communities in both KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, which have seen the integrated security forces recover volumes of suspected stolen property whose value is yet to be determined.”
Peters also says people have been arrested for being in possession of stolen property.
“In Gauteng, during integrated operations at a number of hostels in mostly Tembisa, Johannesburg, Alexandra and Moroka over the weekend, 14 suspects were arrested for being in possession of suspected looted property. Amongst the goods recovered were bed mattresses, television sets, couches, fridges, sound systems, computer screens laptops, steel frames, grocery and clothing items.”
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