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Drink-driving arrests double

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MBABANE – Motorists appear to have ignored Prime Minister Sibusiso Barnabas Dlamini’s warning against drink-driving during the festive holidays.

This is reflected in the number of drink-drivers who were nabbed over the festive holidays which has doubled compared to the same period in 2009.

There were 51 motorists arrested for drink-driving last year, while 117 were nabbed between December 24-27 this year.

The Manzini region recorded the highest number of drink-drivers where 49 motorists were nabbed.

This is a huge figure compared to 2009, where 17 were arrested.

Hhohho, which had 20 drink-drivers last year saw this figure rise to 27 in 2010 while the Lubombo region, where there were 11 cases in 2009 also saw the figure go up to 22 this year.

Shiselweni had the lowest number with 19 drink-drivers, which is far above last year’s figure of only three offenders.

Police Public Relations Officer Superintendent Wendy Hleta said the drunken motorists were given bail ranging from E700-E2 500.

The PM had warned that police "will be on extra alert over the festive period to be a visible and highly effective deterrent to those who risk causing disaster and tragedy on our roads".

Two cops arrested for E128 000 car parts theft

MBABANE – Two police officers stationed at the Lobamba Police Station have been arrested for the theft of motor vehicle parts valued at E128 000.

The two, identified as Mahlava Ndzinisa and Mduduzi Right Dlamini,were arrested and charged while at the police station on Thursday morning and appeared before court on the same day.

They are presently kept at the Sidvwashini remand facility pending payment of bail which was fixed at E24 000 per officer and the duo is expected back in court today.

Bail was initially set at E54 000 per officer but was reduced after they pleaded that they could not afford it.

Police Public Relations Officer Superintendent Wendy Hleta confirmed the arrests and said this was one of the cases recently reported to be under investigation against serving police officers.

"The public will be aware that there are more cases that have been reported to be under investigation and indeed where evidence is available the cases shall see the door of the courts that are to decide the fate of these officers," Hleta said.

The police spokesperson said officers should also understand that the law was meant for every offender and police officers, as custodians of the law, should strive to apply the law without finding themselves on the wrong side.

Hleta reminded the public that the Commissioner of Police, Isaac Magagula, has warned police officers a number of times to desist from bad behaviour and to be exemplary in the communities they lived in.

"He (the Commissioner) has mentioned strongly that wayward behaviour will not be tolerated in the police service since it tarnishes the name of the police locally and internationally. It is therefore emphasised to officers to respect their profession and avoid being party with criminals as this might cost their job one day," Hleta said.

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