Minister of Police Bheki Cele is known for his verbose statements and the new Level 3 restrictions have brought out some of his best.
At a police parade in KwaMashu, north of Durban, Cele raised eyebrows and the rage of the EFF by saying that, “this time, there is no 31 December”.
“There is no New Year’s Eve. There is no tin-hitting. By 21:00, we want everybody ‘ulele’. Everybody must be in bed by 21:00. It’s important to understand this,” he said.
#LockdownLevel3 #BhekiCele Minister Bheki Cele said in Kwamashu, KwaZulu-Natal that their will be no December 31 You Will be in bed By 21:00.A stern warning for Potential New years eve Party Animals. @News24 @BOSBEER2006 @MARIUSBROODRYK @1SecondLater @SAPoliceService pic.twitter.com/WLUdNGFHGY
— BOSBEER.COM (@BOSBEER2006) December 30, 2020
It seems the Minister of Police is keen to outdo his infamous “shoot to kill” comments from 2009 that caused major uproar at the time.
During a media briefing on the adjusted Level 3 rules, Cele warned that the police are not going to tolerate any of the bootlegging antics which were seen during the second alcohol ban earlier this year.
“Don’t put alcohol in your teapots in restaurants. Don’t put alcohol in the bottles written 0% alcohol. We know your tricks, don’t do that,” he said.
The EFF have responded with particular outrage at Cele’s bedtime comments releasing a statement calling the Minister a “clown” and an “imbecile” who “clearly suffers from verbal diarrhoea”.
EFF Statement On The Utterances Made By Bheki Cele pic.twitter.com/pQPFIp7UF5
— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) December 31, 2020
While Cele’s comments are entertaining they aren’t the law. As President Ramaphosa expressed, everyone is expected to be at their place of residence from 9pm onwards, but you can ring in the new year without being tucked into bed.