Durban residents awoke to find a decimated city with streets strewn with damaged, discarded loot the rioters had dropped as they fled supermarkets and businesses. 

Citizen patrollers continued with their patrol shifts to secure neighbourhoods as looters continued to pillage and burn what businesses were still standing. Makro in Springfield Park was a fresh target on Tuesday and Distell’s premises in Pinetown was also looted and torched. At Makro the thieves loaded their loot into their awaiting personal vehicles. In Amanzimtoti the community continued with their efforts to hold looters back from Galleria.

Some brave supermarket owners, those who were lucky enough to survive the violent orgy of the past 36 hours, opened their doors for few hours, to provide families with basic supplies. From Tongaat, Phoenix and Durban North to Glenwood, Umbilo, Pinetown, New Germany, Kloof, Amanzimtoti and Umkomaas residents swiftly organised and consolidated to secure their communities.

Watch the devastation in Empangeni:

Watch the mess and destruction the mob of rioters and looters left behind in the Durban CBD

A lone SANDF vehicle was sighted in the Durban CBD in West Street and there were repots of SANDF helicopters near Brackenfell in Waterfall where the situation remained volatile. 

Watch the video of the SANDF vehicle patrol the CBD in the aftermath of the riots here:

In other areas residents were still left to fend for themselves, both armed and unarmed. Citizens consolidated to safeguard stores that opened in some areas as lists of partially open for business supermarkets, garages and other retailers such as pharmacists, pet shops and firearm stores, circulated on social media. Some stores were trading only via orders and collections at safe meeting points, while others opened their doors to trade for a few hours as the communities stood guard.

Police minister Bheki Cele told journalists in a Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Cluster media briefing on Tuesday that police would ”double their efforts” to stop the riots and violence.

“The current situation on the ground is under strong surveillance and we will ensure that it does not deteriorate any further. We cannot allow anyone to make a mockery of our democratic state and we have instructed the law enforcement agencies to double their efforts the stop the violence and to increase deployment on the ground,” he said.

“As ministers of this cluster we add our voices to that of our President and the many law abiding and peace-loving South Africans who have strongly condemned lawlessness, violence and destruction that is currently happening in certain areas of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng as reported in the media. We call for an immediate end to this violence, looting and the disregard of the law and call for an immediate return to peace and stability,” Cele said.

Celes said 10 people had been killed during the riots, four in KZN and six in Gauteng. He said police had arrested 757 people, 304 in KwaZulu-Natal and 453 in Gauteng.

Sadly, a doubling of police efforts will not be enough to stem the tide of violence as reports of looters enroute to fresh business targets continued to flow on social media groups on Tuesday.

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Presh JM Reporter

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