Africa

SECURITY FORCES IN SOUTH AFRICA HAVE INTENSIFIED EFFORTS TO CRACK DOWN ON UNAUTHORIZED MINING ACTIVITIES.

On Thursday, December 14, a joint operation involving dozens of army and police personnel conducted searches in the Soul

SECURITY FORCES IN SOUTH AFRICA HAVE INTENSIFIED EFFORTS TO CRACK DOWN ON UNAUTHORIZED MINING ACTIVITIES.

On Thursday, December 14, a joint operation involving dozens of army and police personnel conducted searches in the Soul City settlement near Kagiso, west of Johannesburg, seizing mining equipment from shacks, as reported by AFP journalists on the scene.

The provincial police commissioner disclosed that more than 70 individuals, predominantly undocumented migrants, were detained over a two-day period in the vicinity, situated near abandoned gold mines. Some arrests were made in connection with drug dealing and the possession of illegal firearms.

Addressing the media during a passing-out ceremony for 1,400 new police recruits in the central city of Kimberly, President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed the nation’s weariness with crime. He revealed that since the initiation of a crackdown on criminality in May, authorities had made over 250,000 arrests and seized 3,200 firearms.

The prevalent issues of high unemployment, illegal immigration, and escalating crime have emerged as crucial political concerns in the lead-up to next year’s general elections.

In mineral-rich South Africa, thousands of informal miners, commonly referred to as “zama zamas” (“those who try” in Zulu), operate, particularly in the Johannesburg region, marked by slag heaps, shafts, and deep trenches left by generations of miners since the gold rush in the 1880s, which gave birth to the city.

Many of these informal miners, often from other countries, endure challenging conditions while working in clandestine pits. Their activities are perceived as a source of criminality by local residents. Access to the old mines is frequently controlled by gangs, leading to territorial disputes among them.

Quest :Emmanuel Kelvin

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