Cele Encourages Police Not to Hesitate When Confronted by 'Gun-Toting Thugs'

Cele Encourages Police Not to Hesitate When Confronted by 'Gun-Toting Thugs'

  • Police Minister Bheki Cele is employing a heavy-handed approach towards armed and dangerous criminals
  • At a Safer Festive Season tour, Cele urged police to apply excessive force when dealing with gun-toting perpetrators
  • Cele's comments come as 80 officers were killed either while on or off duty per the recent quarterly crime statistics

PAY ATTENTION: Click “See First” under the “Following” tab to see Briefly News on your News Feed!

MTHATHA - Minister of Police Bheki Cele is urging members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) to act decisively whenever they are confronted by a criminal in possession of a dangerous weapon.

The minister, who just a day ago was hot on the lips of social media users amid an earlier visit to Cape Town where he oversaw the destruction of thousands of litres of alcohol, was careful not to allude to his infamous "shoot-to-kill" ideology, News24 reported.

Read also

Police Minister Bheki Cele reminds the police in Mthatha that it is their job to protect women and children

Police Minister, Bheki Cele, Mthatha, Eastern Cape, South African Police Service, SAPS, Cape Town, Armed, Dangerous, Criminals, Safer Festive Season Inspection Tour, Mdantsane, East London
Bheki Cele has told police officers to take a firm stand against criminals. Image: Dwayne Senior/ Bloomberg
Source: Getty Images

Instead, while addressing a Safer Festive Season Inspection Tour in Mthatha in the Eastern Cape on Tuesday, he reminded the men and women in blue that they deal with hardened criminals who would not hesitate to pull the trigger first if caught up in a dangerous situation.

"You are the country’s assets. You are [only] useful when you are alive and well. While you work to enforce the law this festive season, I encourage you to protect yourselves as stipulated by the law," Cele said.

PAY ATTENTION: Never miss breaking news – join Briefly News' Telegram channel!

“When confronted by gun-wielding criminals, don’t hesitate [to retaliate]. When a criminal pulls a gun on you, the only thing that will follow is getting shot and possibly being killed,” Cele added.

18 Police officers killed

According to the recently released quarterly crime statistics, 80 police officers were murdered on and off duty. TimesLIVE reported that as the second-highest figure after KwaZulu-Natal which saw 21 police murders, 17 members were killed in the Eastern Cape.

Read also

Bheki Cele trends after flushing down thousands of litres of booze: 'Minister of Alcohol'

Cele called on the police to thwart violent crimes which occur during social gatherings and other festive season celebrations.

He raised concerns about a series of rapes that occurred in Mdantsane near East London, for which a 14-year-old boy has been arrested. He faces seven counts of rape, with the earliest known case to which he has been linked dating back to 2019.

Briefly News understands the police ministry will hold its eighth leg of the provincial safer festive season tour in the Northern Cape on Wednesday before moving over to KwaZulu-Natal a day later.

Thousands of litres of booze flushed down

As recently reported by Briefly News, a social media windstorm swept across South Africa on Monday as videos surfaced showing Cele flushing thousands of litres of alcohol down the drain in Cape Town.

Cele and SAPS's bid constitute a festive season ministerial inspection tour of the Western Cape where 20 000 litres of alcohol was destroyed at the police's central liquor storage facility at 35 Squadron in Belhar.

The minister noted the alcohol was confiscated at illicit shebeens in the province, with the move to have it destroyed forming part of a concerted approach towards curbing the high levels of crime in the country, News24 reported.

Source: Briefly News

Online view pixel