Makhura says criminal syndicates behind Gauteng riots

The Premier was in Alexandra together with Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko and Provincial Police Commissioner Elias Mawela.

Gauteng Premier David Makhura was in Alexandra on 3 September 2019 together with Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko and Provincial Police Commissioner Elias Mawela following mass looting and violence that gripped parts of the township. Picture: @GautengANC/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng Premier David Makhura on Tuesday became the latest political leader to call for calm following the mass looting and violence that gripped parts of the province, saying it was being carried out by “organised criminal syndicates”.

Makhura was in Alexandra, together with Community Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko and provincial police commissioner Elias Mawela.

Makhura said several of his Cabinet members would spend the afternoon in the township speaking to community leaders, religious leaders, and organised groups.

“It is very clear that some of these are well organised criminal syndicates because you can see the kind of stuff they use to break into these shops and what they are looking for,” he said.

The Alexandra was the latest to be hit by looting, arson attacks, and public violence after similar violence in areas including the Joburg CBD, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane.

Makhura said there was no justification for the violence.

“This cannot be justified by unemployment or people who are unhappy. We are a self-respecting democracy [and] we have to ensure that we respect the law.”

More than a hundred people were arrested since the weekend.