police ethekwini cemetery police eastern cape

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Gqeberha police say robbers are targeting cemetery mourners

Police in the Eastern Cape are urging graveyard visitors to be extra cautious and vigilant. At least five robberies have taken place at the Forest Hill cemetery since April.

police ethekwini cemetery police eastern cape

Photo: Pixabay

The South African Police Service (SAPS) in the Eastern Cape is encouraging mourners and other visitors to graveyards to be extra cautious because there has been a marked increase in robberies at the Forest Hills cemetery in Humewood, Nelson Mandela Bay.


Gqeberha police told those who visit grave sites to pay their respects to dead loved ones be extra cautious and vigilant of their surroundings as there has been at least five robberies at the Forest Hills cemetery since April.

“The robbers threaten the victims with knives and rob them of their personal belongings. In some cases, they request for the vehicle keys and then steal whatever is in the vehicle,” said police spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu.

Naidoo said the robbers usually strike at “any time during the day” and operate in a group of between four and eight people.

“Mourners are advised not to visit grave sites alone,” added Naidu. “The area is quiet and the robbers lie in wait for their victims.”

A thoroughfare, which is used by pedestrians and joggers, also cuts across the cemetery. The police advise visitors not to wear expensive jewellery or carry valuable items on their trips to Forest Hills cemetery.

“If suspicious people are seen approaching you while at the grave site, try and make a hasty retreat or attract attention of other people if they are around,” said Naidu.

“Criminals have no boundaries and in most cases, the vulnerable are easy targets. Let’s be proactive, alert and take note of these hints in order to enhance your personal safety.”