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By Jarryd Westerdale

Digital Journalist

Elections 2024: Police helicopters and drones patrol Gauteng on voting day

The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure launched the aerial patrollers from Mayfair on the morning of the elections.

Law enforcements units responsible for safety and security on election launched their flighted assistants.

Ten helicopters with accompanying drones took off from Arthur Block Park in Mayfair, tasked with monitoring hotspots across Gauteng.

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Safety and security during elections

The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NatJoints) has incorporated provincial police, Gauteng Traffic Police and the metropolitan police departments from Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane, into their command for the elections.

“We are in control and in charge of security in the country. We have full faith in the measures that we have put in place to ensure voting takes place in a safe and secure environment. Let’s go out there to protect the constitutional rights of our communities,” Co-chair of NatJoints, Deputy National Commissioner Lieutenant-General Tebello Mosikili, told the gathered officers.

Nationwide voting running smoothly

Police Minister Bheki Cele said voting was progressing smoothly in the majority of the country.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has also been deployed to areas where the threat of political violence exists.

ALSO READ: Nationwide voting running smoothly, extra police sent to Eastern Cape, says Cele [VIDEO]

The only serious blip was in the Eastern Cape where one voting station remained closed due to the community choosing to staying away from the polls.

Several incidents of voting stations opening late were reported, either due to a lack of scanners or ballots having not arrived on time.

Three arrested for intimidation

Meanwhile, police have arrested three people for threatening a voter who refused to share which political party they would be voting for.

ALSO READ: Trio arrested for threatening a voter who refused to share details of vote

Police spokesperson Brigadier Hlulani Mashaba said the woman reported the matter to the Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) and police.

Police reported that the woman arrived to cast her vote but was harassed by a man and two women who demanded to know who she was voting for.

The trio are expected to appear in the Ritavi Magistrate’s Court after the elections.