SAPS disclosed on Sunday that the officers tracked a certain container to the Dube Trade Port, which had 228 blocks of cocaine concealed in meat boxes. It said that the incident took place Friday and that it was the "second drug bust" in the last two days. AFP

South African Police Service (SAPS) destroyed different types of drugs worth R800 million during a police operation in Johannesburg on Thursday.

Brigadier Athlenda Mathe, national police spokesperson, announced on the same day that General Fannie Masemola, national commissioner of the SAPS, destroyed drugs including cocaine, heroin, mandrax and marijuana.

The spokesperson also recalled that within the 2022 to 2023 financial year, the department has destroyed 20.8 tons of drugs with a street value of R2 billion.

She noted that most of the seized drugs were linked to high-profile cases, including the Maydon Wharf case, in which the department confiscated more than 1 ton of cocaine with a street value of R400 million.

"This drug bust happened in August 2022 when Ebrahim Kara, Elias Radebe and Meshack Ngobese were arrested in Cape Town after a truck transporting more than 600 blocks of cocaine was stopped by police and the drugs were discovered hidden in false wooden boards," Mathe said, as per SA News.

"This matter was finalized and Kara was handed down an eight-year sentence while Radebe and Ngobese were handed down one year and six years imprisonment sentences respectively," she added.

According to the spokesperson, 1.3 tons of illegal pharmaceutical drugs/medicines, including non-registered Viagra, were seized. She shared the destruction of the drugs followed the conclusion of a court order confirming the finalization of cases.

"It is also worth noting that all drugs exhibit materials that were destructed were audited to ensure compliance to the set standard," Mathe said further.

The National Commissioner of SAPS noted that these operations helped the department arrest 15,400 suspects involved in drug possession and another 7,000 have been nabbed for dealing in drugs.

"The recent drug confiscation of R150 million [worth] of cocaine in KwaZulu-Natal also illustrates the cooperation between law enforcement agencies across the world in clamping down on transnational organized crime," Masemola said.

"Indeed, our intelligence structures are hard at work in preventing and putting a stop to the drug trade in the country and beyond. This is also a clear demonstration that all stakeholders involved in border security are working together to tighten the control measures of cargo entering and departing our country," he added.

It can be recalled that South African President Cyril Ramaphosa met with Zimbabwean counterpart Emmerson Mnangagwa earlier this month to discuss increasing border security to ensure that illegal cross-border activities would be stopped.