Soft targets

Brian Pittman, Fish Hoek

When chatting to an elderly woman I was more than disturbed to hear from her that she had been fined R1 000 for failing to wear a mask while walking along the catwalk. Needless to say, she informed me that she was on her way to Simon’s Town to pay the fine.

Another law-abiding citizen is soft targeted by our law enforcers in the sure knowledge that this is one fine that will be paid.

For heaven’s sake, the beach is packed with folk/families enjoying the fresh air and the chance to shed the masks for a while. I see many people daily not wearing masks and wonder if any fines are imposed.

Whilst on the subject of soft targets and in particular this particular fine the question begs to be asked: Why is it that minibus taxis are allowed to use the Beach Road (adjoining the taxi rank), which is a one way, travelling in an unlawful direction.

Why is it that minibus taxis are permitted to ignore red lights on the Main Road in Fish Hoek? Do they have some form of indemnity or are they merely considered as not being soft targets and the fines will never be paid anyway so why bother? Am I able to get this indemnity as well?

This is a democratic country, and we should all be abiding to the same laws as laid down, but it seems as though only soft targets are the ones targeted with the knowledge that, as law abiding citizens, the fines will be paid.

• Law enforcement spokesman Wayne Dyason responds:

People are allowed to enjoy the beach but must do so responsibly in line with the protocols of Covid-19.

The City’s law enforcement officers apply the law equally. The wearing of masks when in public is compulsory and the enforcement thereof is regulated by the National Disaster Management Act (Alert Level 1).

All authorised officers, including the City’s traffic service , metro police and law enforcement departments as well as SAPS are required to enforce these regulations and they have done so without fear or favour.

Due to limited resources, we cannot deal with every case that happens in the public domain, but whatever happens in our presence is dealt with.

With regards to public transport vehicles, including taxis, officers do issue fines and impound vehicles.

During last week, the City’s traffic service impounded 206 vehicles. The week prior, 256 vehicles were impounded and during the second week of March, the number of impoundments was at 186 – a total of 648 over the three-week period.