6PM – 6AM CURFEW: Drama as residents face arrest for using toilet at night

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SOME Jahunda suburb residents who use community toilets have expressed concern for being arrested while visiting the facilities during curfew hours.

Under the lockdown, there is a curfew that runs from 6AM to 6PM.

This has created a challenge for some Jahunda residents who use community toilets that cater for hundreds of people near Gwanda Rank.

During the curfew period it is reported that police have pounced on some residents while on their way to or from the ablution facilities.

Gwanda mayor Councillor Njabulo Siziba confirmed the development in a telephone interview.

Siziba, who is also the area councillor for the area, ward 4, said policing must have a human face in such situations.

“I have at times received reports from the community in my ward who are getting arrested for going to the toilet.

Something that every human is bound to do in a day.

“We are not saying police must not do their job but they should be lenient and be able to understand the situation on ground,” said Clr Siziba.

A resident, Cathrine Zitha said: “I once had a relative who had visited and when they were coming from the toilet heading home, there were taken by the Ranger (police patrol vehicle). We heard from the neighbours that there is a person who had just been arrested and they described what he was wearing. We identified after a call that it was our visiting relative who had gone to relieve himself.”

She said they had to pay a fine.

Another resident who refused to be named council should build more toilets.

“Obviously the toilet is being used by a lot of people and we are not even given sanitisers while the flashing system is not working well.

“We also have had situations where people get arrested on their way to the toilet during curfew. Police are not even willing to listen to an excuse,” said the resident, who preferred anonymity.

“What needs to be done first and for most is that we need more toilets, constant availability of water, sanitising and regular cleaning. Also the lightning systems should be upgraded for safety and the police system to be informed about the public toilets situation,” added the resident.

A youth who lives in the suburb identified only as Miss Ndlovu said the municipality should provide them with alternative accommodation.

“I think they (law enforcement agents) should consider our area of residence as we walk about 300 meters to the toilet. Therefore, there is need to be considered as citizens even though we stay in one roomed houses, using public toilets. Let council build the new houses that will have all the facilities or even to let us build on our own.” said Miss Ndlovu.

— Chronicle


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