Some Capetonians criticized the Police Ministers most recent street Imbizo and slammed it as a show, lipservice and political grandstanding.
Minister Bheki Cele lent an ear to residents of Khayelitsha and thereafter Manenberg and Heideveld on Thursday, accompanied by an entourage of armed police.
It comes as SAPS investigate ten murders in Manenberg, as a result of a flare up in gang violence this week. Five people were also gunned down in the Endlovini informal settlement in Khaya on Monday.
Residents say policing- or a lack thereof- continues to be problem. The absence of basic services such as electricity, they say, has further contributed to a high crime rate.
Cele said that a “culture of non-delivery” will not be tolerated and pointed out that residents’ concerns filter into many other governmental departments:
“It is a fact that dark streets and alleyways without streetlights and houses without numbers impede policing. This is why local government and the SAPS should, and must, work to urgently to improve this situation. Resources must be combined to better service these areas. I can assure you that doing this, will go a long way in improving the police’s ability to keep residents safer.”
Cele said that the extra SAPS support provided to the Anti Gang Unit (AGU) will remain in the area until calm is restored. According to Cele, daily operations in Manenberg have resulted in 40 arrests since the 12th March 2022, of which 23 were for murder. He called on communities to strengthen their working relationship with police.
“Taking action together will ensure the space for gangs and their criminal ways will be squeezed out and with more boots on the ground, these streets will once again be safe for children to play on,” Cele said.
Residents highlighted that gangsters run rampant and that police have a lack luster approach to reacting to crime scenes. According to reports, a man was shot a few hundred meters from Cele’s visit in Manenberg. Police have not yet confirmed or denied these claims.
by Tauhierah Salie