Police keep beady eye on Black Friday shopping sprees
No cases of theft or violence were reported during Black Friday, but police still issued a warning, using loudhailers, to shoppers splurging across the province to be vigilant.
Provincial police spokesperson Captain Khaya Tonjeni said police members had been deployed as part of Operation Buya Mthetho to enhance visibility and combat crime at malls.
“We appeal to the public to exercise caution for opportunistic criminals who will be looking for unsuspecting victims,” Tonjeni said.
“In various clusters we have loudhailers to remind shoppers and social grant beneficiaries to be on high alert.
“Those carrying large sums of money are encouraged to also consider other banking options like electronic and cellphone banking to minimise loss and exposure to crime and robbery.
Mthatha, Komani, King William’s Town and East London cluster spokespersons confirmed to the Dispatch that no cases of robbery and theft had been reported by Friday morning.
Uniformed police were seen keeping a close eye on the shopping masses.
Cambridge police spokesperson Captain Mluleki Mbi said police in East London had started patrolling on Thursday at 10pm.
“We will continue until tomorrow [Saturday],” Mbi said.
“Police are looking to curb any distraction that may happen.
“There is police visibility everywhere.”
Mthatha cluster spokesperson Captain Dineo Koena said they were concerned shoppers would be mugged.
“We are keeping the shops safe,” she said.
Tonjeni urged residents to report all crime incidents to police immediately.