Cape Town – A police officer says she was denied entry at a Pick n Pay store because her colleague had tested positive for the coronavirus.

Constable Phumlisa Magadu, 28, says she went to PnP Express in Heritage Park on Sunday where a male staffer had asked her at which police station she worked.

The shop is situated at a BP petrol station on the N2 near Somerset West. When she told him Lwandle SAPS, she was told that they do not allow people from “that station” in the store.

Lwandle police station recorded its first Covid-19 case on Saturday when an officer tested positive.

“I was shocked and embarrassed as it happened in the full view of the public,” says Phumlisa.

“I was being discriminated against due to our member testing positive.”

The constable left the shop and reported the matter to her station commander.

“I was hurt by what happened and it was not right at all. Someone with the virus might have entered that shop without him realising, but he focused on me since I am from Lwandle police station.”

Lwandle SAPS station commander Colonel Xolani Williams was fuming over the incident.

“This man should have known better. I have reported the matter to the Human Rights Commission,” said Williams.

Meanwhile, Pick n Pay spokesperson, Janine Caradonna, said the incident was “simply an unfortunate misunderstanding”.

“Staff were under the impression that the entire police station was quarantined. The owner of the store immediately addressed this with staff and reiterated the strict safety measures the store needs to continue following to protect customers and staff alike.

“The store has great respect for the staff at Lwandle police station and the owner is personally visiting the station to clarify the misunderstanding.”

BP spokesperson, Nelisiwe Masina, says they will investigate: “BP has a zero-tolerance against any form of discrimination.”


By Velani Ludidi / Daily Voice