Eleven people were arrested in Jeppestown for various offences when the police, with the assistance of the national army, raided the hostels in this volatile area in Johannesburg Central, the police reported on Wednesday.
Presenting his department’s report, the South African Police Services national spokesperson, Solomon Makgale, said the eleven persons that were arrested were all men and the arrests varied from being found in possession of drugs to being found with stolen property. He said that, in the raid that was carried out from about 10 pm up to 4 am and was broadcast by eNCA, they netted the eleven men who range in age between 24 years and 49 years of age. Makgale added that large bags of dagga were confiscated in the raid as well as a large number of suspected stolen items. The police also confirmed that they would be taking these men to court and would be charged with possession of drugs and stolen property even though it was not immediately clear how much dagga there was. They would appear before the Jeppestown Magistrates Court on Thursday. Weapons that were potentially used in xenophobic attacks were also confiscated according to ETV news report.
Images that were aired by the eNCA showed men who were wearing nothing more than boxer shorts, with their hands against the wall while the police and members of the military searched their homes. This follows an undertaking by the Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula earlier in day that the army would be sent into areas where xenophobic attacks had flared up throughout the country. About three weeks back, violent attacks were perpetrated against foreigners in parts of KwaZulu-Natal, which led to the death of five people. Additional xenophobic attacks erupted in Jeppestown and resulted in the attack on several foreigners and the destruction of property. Some pockets of the disturbances were also witnessed in Alexandra township and xenophobia is blamed for the death of one foreigner, Emmanuel Sithole even though people in other spheres have argued that this was more of a criminal act.