South Africa arrests 87 ahead of anti-government protest
South African security forces on Monday said 87 people had been arrested in the last 12 hours across the country over public violence.
This came ahead of planned protests by the Marxist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party.
The EFF had called for a national shutdown to protest crippling power cuts and demand the resignation of President Cyril Ramaphosa.
The party’s main constituencies were the poor and working-class Black South Africans who felt left out of the country’s prosperity since the governing African National Congress (ANC) ended white minority rule in 1994.
National intelligence body NatJOINTS said in a statement that of the 87 arrested, 41 were in Gauteng, the province which included the capital Pretoria and the main city Johannesburg, 29 were in the northwest province, and 15 were in Free State.
It added that there had been arrests in other provinces, such as Mpumalanga and the Eastern Cape.
Parliament said on Sunday that the South African military would deploy 3,474 troops monthly until April 17 to prevent and combat crime in cooperation with the police.
“Law enforcement officers are on high alert and will continue to prevent and combat any acts of criminality,” NatJOINTS said.
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