By Victor Maphosa
Police have dismissed allegations by Bulawayo organisations that its officers enforcing lockdown measures were targeting people from that area out of proportion to the population.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the information was false and misleading.
“We want to dismiss some information from civic organisations in Bulawayo purporting that the ZRP and other security agents who are enforcing the lockdown are only targeting people from that province,” he said.
“As police, our mandate is to maintain law and order in the country and we are not selective. We are, therefore, on the ground enforcing the Covid-19 lockdown directive to ensure there is compliance in all provinces. That is why officers were deployed across the country.
“For some people to say officers are targeting certain people in certain provinces is a lie.
“We are arresting people without fear or favour. Those who do not want to be arrested should not commit crimes.”
Asst Comm Nyathi said the lockdown regulations were set for everyone, therefore, every citizen had to comply.
Since the beginning of the lockdown in March, police have arrested 28 403 people for various offences.
Bulawayo, Midlands, Manicaland and Harare provinces account for the highest numbers of daily arrests.
Asst Comm Nyathi said those who were arrested were found engaging in unnecessary movement, illegal gatherings, operating businesses without exemptions and, since last week, not wearing a face mask.
“The number of arrests continue to rise every day,” he said. “This means people are not adhering to the Covid-19 health measures.
“We continue to urge the nation to comply with health regulations. We made it clear since the beginning of the lockdown that those who choose to defy the measures will be arrested, without fear or favour.” The Herald