THE Eastern Cape government has spent R12 million on 40 new police vehicles and eight motorbikes.

They were handed over in Zwelitsha near King Williams Town by Transport MEC Weziwe Tikana and provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga on Wednesday.

Ntshinga said the vehicles were a valuable resource which allowed cops to carry out their duties more effectively.

She said the vehicles, which were mainly Nissan double-cab bakkies, were suited to rural roads and would ensure that detectives could attend to cases swiftly.

“The misuse of state vehicles will not be tolerated. Criminal and disciplinary investigations will be opened against those suspected of misusing state vehicles.

“The neglect and lack of maintenance will be acted upon and those responsible will be held accountable for the costs incurred,” she said.

Tikana said they had given the cops extraordinary wings which she hoped would make their jobs easier.

“The introduction of those bikes is critical as it means you will have your ear on the ground. As the MEC, I will support you, be your ambassador and champion in the fight against the killing of police,” she said.

Aliwal North and Mount Ayliff clusters received six vehicles while Elliot, Grahamstown and Mthatha got four and KwaDwesi in Port Elizabeth received three.