Zama zamas have become a headache for the authorities, but the men and women in blue will not give up the fight.
To fight this scourge, Okae Molao operations was in full swing in Kagiso, Mogale City on Thursday.
Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela said almost every squatter camp in the kasi had a gold processing spot. He said illegal mining gangs ran much deeper than people realized, and serious money was being made.
“To show the seriousness of these illegal activities, they even have security guarding their employees and equipment,” said Mawela.
He said zama zamas were dangerous. “These guys are well armed and have no fear. The problem is that they kill each other over territory and sometimes innocent people are caught in the crossfire.”
Mawela said residents couldn’t even sleep properly at night because zama zamas used explosives.
“We started with our operation in Kagiso on Saturday. We arrested nine suspects and confiscated 14 generators and other gold-bearing materials.
“We also arrested 739 suspects for GBV-related crimes.”
He said cops would continue to monitor the area as it seemed to have a problem with various criminal activities.
“While conducting a roadblock, we arrested a suspect on a motorbike who was in possession of drugs.
“We also made another arrest relating to a car hijacked in the area. We’ll keep a close eye on this kasi.”
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