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CITY ADOPTS STRINGENT MEASURES TO DETER CRIMINAL ACTIVITY DURING FUNERALS

Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo (JCPZ) the custodians of the city’s 42 cemeteries and crematoria, is calling on policing authorities to adopt a zero-tolerance stance on the illegal discharging of firearms at funerals.

JCPZ is working closely with the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) to deter unruly and disrespectful behaviours by a small minority attending funerals in the city’s cemeteries.

Recent reports at Westpark Cemetery and the Olifantsvlei Cemetery indicate that during the burial of persons suspected of criminal activity, members of the mourning party illegally discharged their firearms.

“Cemeteries are sacred spaces, and we will not tolerate any illegal or disrespectful behaviours,” reinforced, Jenny Moodley, the Spokesperson at JCPZ. “We are working with the JMPD to ensure that anyone who violates the law is held accountable.”

The JMPD and the local SAPS have been requested to remain on high alert and make the necessary arrests of persons transgressing the bylaws, which includes the illegal consumption of alcohol, littering and urinating in and around the cemetery.

There is also a dependency on the public and adjacent residents to speedily alert the relevant policing authority. The JMPD contingent stationed outside the cemetery has been tasked to close the main gates and immediately conduct random searches. Policing structures are also authorized to make swift arrests of any person found entering and or exiting the cemetery with a weapon and confiscate alcohol.

In addition to working with the JMPD, JCPZ has put in place added stringent measures to deter criminal activity in cemeteries:

  • Private security officials are deployed at the entrance to the cemetery.
  • Random searches are conducted on entering the city’s cemeteries.
  • A holding deposit of R1000 is in place and non-complying families will be charged this fee through the funeral director.
  • Cemetery ushers are visible and will also alert security of transgressions during a burial.
  • JMPD has a visible presence at the entrance to also address traffic congestion concerns.

“We are committed to ensuring that cemeteries are safe and that the rule of law prevails,” said Jenny Moodley. “We urge anyone who witnesses illegal or disrespectful behaviours at a cemetery to report it to JMPD on 011 375 5555 and to swiftly alert Crime Stop on 0860 0 10111.”

INFO SUPPLIED.

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